Sunday, July 01, 2007

Flynn completes his ROCI checklist...

Flynn-o leaves for his "ROCI" (Reserve Officer Candidate Indoctrination - U.S. Coast Guard) program in two weeks. He's been faithfully doing his sit-ups, push-ups and workouts for the last couple of months to get in shape for his physical and he's got a list of things to get ready. This an exciting opportunity for him, and maybe even more importantly (well to me) it allows him to transfer out of his 72-hour-ready-deployable unit into a stateside only position. Just in the nick of time - from what the rumor mill is churning about.

Flynn grew up in a counter-culture household. He was born in a barn (literally - this is a little joke of ours. But it's true - his parents lived in an apartment in the loft of a barn. He was born at home with a midwife assisting.) His family lived off the land and they made a little extra cash selling hand-dyed batik work and produce at the market. It was a simple life out on an island. Up with nakedness, dancing, music. Down with guns, war and violence. You get the picture.
I love this photo of his parents wedding. So late 60's / early 70's!

He spent his young adult life working on and eventually driving small passenger / eco cruise type boats in Alaska in the summer and snowboarding all winter.

When I met him in his late 20's he was a fun loving, unstructured flirt just starting college. (Now he's a fun loving, structured flirt!:) After a while he began to miss driving boats something fierce and he loved the idea of search and rescue so he decided to join the Coast Guard reserves to get his boat driving fix, serve his fellow mariners and get a little $$ for school.

He signed his joining papers on August 29, 2001. On August 31st we left for a 10 day trip to Manhattan. On September 9th I caught the red eye back to Seattle and he went to Cape May, NJ. His first day of training was September 10, 2001. You can see where this is heading... Next thing we know planes are crashing into buildings we just visited and he was pretty much automatically on active duty. On his second day of Coast Guard school. He was "officially" called up two days after returning home from training. He stayed on active duty for almost a year. Away from home. Yeah, it really caught us off guard. He went back to reserve status for 5 months and then he was off to Iraq and Kuwait for a 9 month mission - starting in February 2003 - eight days after our first anniversary, one month before the start of the Iraq war.


Prior to joining the reserves Flynn had never even held a gun before - let alone shoot one.

So fast forward a few years. He's a career guy now with a fancy-pants job at a good company. And, it turns out Flynn loves the Coast Guard. I mean really loves it. He loves the traditions, rituals, camaraderie and probably most of all - the gear! Sure it's a little hard for him to bite his tongue about things like, oh, THE #@$!-ing WAR and other *uh-hem* reckless decisions our administration makes, but he feels like he's trying to be part of the process and progress and he's contributing in an effort to serve his country. Really it's more than me and my big opinionated mouth can say for myself. And that's the kind of guy he is - he'd much rather be part of the solution and that's one of the reasons I dig him.

And now here we are. With his checklist for the ROCI program.
  • New boots - check
  • Medal bar updated - check
  • Formal blues fitted, cleaned and pressed - check
  • New tattoo - check
Hey, wait! What? Yep, he's been talking about getting some new ink for the last 7 years. And all my stalling tactics have been worn thin. Since his life in the Coast Guard has impacted his life so much I guess it's fitting he chose something CG related. Here it is - fresh and new, red and ouchy:

He loves it when I call him a boats-wain (rather than a "bose-an". Heh.) I just found out today he likes it when people call him just "boats". Hmmm, a new nickname, perhaps?


Anonymous Daphne said...

What an interesting story! Congrats to Flynn.

12:12 PM  
Anonymous Wende said...

Congrats to Flynn. That ink is amazing and so appropriate. And yes, I think he has a new nick-name.

7:49 PM  
Anonymous tiennie said...

Very cool guy you've got there!

9:35 PM  
Anonymous DomesticShorthair said...

Good story about "Boats"! I love that picture of his parents on wedding day; it's a classic!

10:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, this is certainly random :) I have no idea how I found this but I'm reporting to ROCI on 7/14/07 as well. Should be an experience!

11:38 PM  
Blogger Knittymuggins said...

Wow, thanks so much for sharing Wednee! You must be so proud :) I wish him the best of luck in his upcoming instruction! ~Maryanne

5:56 PM  

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