Lots to report on here. I’ve inserted myself into the rotation for things to do outside of the wall again, and it’s nice to get out and get my hands a little dirty again. I haven’t had to pull a trigger yet, but being outside the wall on an operation still gets the blood pumping, and allows me a few moments of fear to try and work down that feeling of paralysis I had the night I almost shot (check that, didn’t shoot)Sylvia.
Yesterday I went for the walk through the woods to the cabin Sylvia’s family died in. We had wanted to remove the wood stove in it since we found her, and that’s what we did. Ethan, back from a long stint at MGR drove the school’s four wheeler, and myself, Kevin, Blake, and Quan went on foot.
It was nice to be on foot patrol again. If it wasn’t for the cold, and the light snow on the ground, and the green forest, it would’ve been exactly like doing a foot patrol in Iraq. I know that sounds completely different, but what I’m really saying is that if FELT the same.
Walking spaced out, weapons up, nomex gloves on, fully kitted with body armor and weapons, watching everyone else do the right things at the right time… It felt nice. It felt comfortable. It was dangerous, but with those people, it felt safe. I asked the guys to do a combat breach of the cabin, and we formed a stack like the good old days, and went in for the clear. I felt really rusty doing this with guys that have a LOT more active duty time. They were spot on precise, and I made a couple minor blunders. Kevin assured me they were minor, and not a big deal, but ANY mistake around guys like that seems magnified a hundred times.
I did feel like I was much more of a part of the team after the breach though. The guys saw me in action for the first time, and I wasn’t a FNG. I held my own enough that they knew they could trust me if the shit went south.
I really needed that for my ego. I really needed to get that look on their faces that they approved of me. It felt great when I saw it on their faces. I didn’t even know I was fishing for approval from these people, but I certainly was. I could FEEL the relief.
Blake was a bit behind, but held his own as well. He’s only just getting back into shape himself, and he came along mostly for engineering smarts on the stove removal. Speaking of which, that went well. The trailer on the four wheeler was large enough and strong enough to hold it, and with our group of terribly manly men, we were able to get it off the wall, and move it out of the run down cabin and into said trailer.
We pulled the entire stove pipe, wall mounts, and the bricks the stove sat on too. It slowed the four wheeler down to a fucking crawl on the way back, but in reality, we were moving at foot speed anyway, so it was a wash. Right now the stove is in storage. We don’t NEED it in any of the buildings right at the moment, so there was no sense in installing it. It’s in the gymnasium near the hydroponics set up.
What else… Let’s see. While we were out the work on clearing the path to the waterfront for the tower resumed. It’s slow going, but steady work. We’re cutting the trees down with chainsaws, dragging them out with the backhoe, and cutting them down to lumber size chunks. It’s a bitch making lumber with the tools we have, but we’re making do. I’m guessing we have about ten or twelve days of cutting to go before we are at the waterfront. Somewhere in there we need to rip up stumps before the ground freezes (that or ignore them until spring), then build the damn tower itself.
That’ll be a motherfucker as the weather turns south on us, which could be any day. So far, this winter has been far milder than last, which is great. We can use every single day of warmer weather we are given.
Oh, and another minor pain in the ass is dogs. Legit dogs. They’ve been skulking around at the gates the past few days as a pack. I guess the video feeds have been accurate. I’d say it was a non issue, but the damn things are barking at us when they see or hear us through the gates. I don’t want all that noise, especially late at night. Now that sounds stupid in my head when I know we’ve been running chainsaws and hacking trees down with axes, but you get my drift. I just don’t want animals drawing in undead.
Plus I fucking hate dogs now. The thought of dogs here inside the walls makes my fucking skin crawl. I’d like to start a holocaust on all dogs taller than the middle of my calf. If it can reach my groin, I want it gone.
Yep, I’m a hater. Deal with it.
Not much else to report from the last couple days. School starts again tomorrow for a few days, and campus other than the dogs barking has been quiet. MGR continues to see a slight increase in the amount of dead, which tells us that when we do restock them in a few days, we’re probably going to leave an extra body behind for staffing. I hate to spread ourselves so thin, but additional personnel aren’t exactly around for hiring, and even if they were, our food situation is bad enough as it is.
99 problems... right?