Fallen Ill and Time is Running Short.....

You may have noticed that I haven't blogged recently. I've been sick (with pneumonia) and lost not only blogging time, but time I'd intended to spend preparing for my departure next week to Fort Dix and training.

I noticed that I had a sore throat last Saturday, but thought nothing of it. I continued to pack Monday, and also gave my mom more instructions on how to use e-mail and how to read this blog. (Things are coming along.)

Tuesday, I woke up feeling like I'd been hit by a truck.

I stayed in bed most of the day, but managed a trip to the doctor's office, where I described my symptoms: body aches, tightness in the chest, the sorest throat I could ever remember having, five-minute coughing fits every half hour or so. He diagnosed my problem as early stage pneumonia, after asking a barrage of personal questions.

I spent another 24 hours in bed and returned to the doctor's office, where a nurse pointed me to an article that said a dangerous bacteria had been detected on the National Mall during recent protests that I'd attended. I don't know if my illness was actually caused by the protest bacteria -- but whatever I got made a mess of the week.

I ended up missing the first day of a scheduled two-day drill. I also lost time I might have spent trying to rent my condo or sell my truck -- tasks that it looks like I'll have to handle from out of town.

We depart Tuesday as a unit to Fort Dix, where we'll complete our training prior to deployment. Mine are still missing, but many of the unit members' foot lockers and duffels are already deposited on the floor of our hanger -- which now looks like the lost baggage area of an airport, albeit one where the only colors used are black and olive drab green.

Packing is one more loose end I'll have to tie up over the weekend. I'm ready, having trained for 10 years for the mission I'm about to take on. Some of the men in my unit have trained for longer, some for less time. Now, we will all execute.

By Bert Stover |  October 14, 2005; 10:06 AM ET  | Category:  Preparation for Departure
Previous: Coming Home, Leaving Home | Next: The Unit Assembles


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First of all get better soon. Second of all be careful. Warning the Pine Barrens are interesting this time of year. Take it easy, I look forward to your thoughts on Fort Dix, I lived next to it for 20 years so let me know what you think. God speed.

Posted by: Military Brat | October 14, 2005 11:55 PM

I just got over the same thing buddy. I try to tell you as much as I can...I am proud of you!!!

Posted by: docadam | October 16, 2005 03:06 AM

Sounds like docadam and Bert Stover must've been exposed to the rabbit fever bacterium rather simultaneously. Were they both at that wonderful American event on the mall on 9/24? Stay tuned!

Posted by: colonels | October 16, 2005 08:06 PM

I just stumbled on this blog. Most interesting, and I feel 'connected' in that my son is a LTJG (USN) MH-60 'Seahawk' helo pilot (Blackhawk airframe). His permanent home port is Norfolk, but he just deployed to Bahrain in late September for six months. Soon after he arrived, most of his detachment 'redeployed' to Pakistan for earthquake relief. So he and two other pilots are very busy taking up the slack for three other aircrews and birds. Two Sundays ago, we learned that my Episcopal priest pastor was being called up by his Virginia National Guard unit for a year long deployment to Iraq beginning in January -- though he actually leaves us tomorrow for training (Fort Dix NJ, then Yuma AZ). "Father John" will be deployed to a combined Army/Marine helo unit in western Iraq, a 'hot spot'. This is his second deployment in 3 years; in 2001/2002 he was in Bosnia. And my former pastor is a Navy Reserve chaplain, currently deployed to Kuwait.

Posted by: Retired AF Lt Col | October 18, 2005 11:45 AM

When you get ready to flight out, stop by my office at the passenger terminal (Bld 1706) McGuire. I have a couch, candy, and an internet connection

Dave Martin

Posted by: Dave Martin | October 18, 2005 11:57 AM

I am a federal employee and was a military brat, so, about I'm very familiar with and sympathetic to - the whole "hurry up and wait" methodology on government travel. However, more than that, I'm also a mama and a granny. Young man, gargle with warm salt water, take your antibiotics until they're gone and whenever you have a chance to sit down, close your eyes and rest, even if it's only for a few minutes. Take care.

Posted by: MamaBear | October 18, 2005 12:50 PM

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