Bottled Letters from Norfolk

September 30, 2004
Hey Nicole!!

Hey Sis, things are going really well, and I feel like I’m fitting in more and more.   I don’t have much time to write to every person, so I hope you don’t mind of I send you some of what I wrote to Mollie, because it would be better than writing everything all over again.  Hey, good job not being grounded and stuff!!  I heard this older Green Day song over the weekend, and I thought of you, a Senior, and your place in life, but the web is down,
I’ll pass the lyrics along when I can.  I got some cards to send home, but know I don’t feel they will get home in time.  Enjoy your time left, and say hi to everyone for me.



It was so good to hear from you all the way from San Diego.  All I can say is that at least you will be out of there soon, and I hope you will really like the next place you are going.  Japan always sound like a lot of fun.  I often think about if you were here, and we were in the same division again.  It would be so much fun, and we would each have the other’s back.  It did seem like we worked through the professional angle quite well, with each of us having to take turns being the sonar “class leader.”  I guess it would be a little different on an actual ship though- I guess it’s like what they say about going into business with friends, or loaning money to family members.

But, anyway and away from all that, you would definitely add a dimension that is lacking, as you can probably imagine.  I watched an animation from jibjab (it is SO funny, and takes cracks at both candidates.  It’s called “This Land”) It makes me think of all our tangles, and your exasperation with me as I’d slide into the op/ed page.  Some thoughts… I would like someone other than Bush still, but I ALSO don’t feel someone should vote for
someone else just because they don’t like the other guy.  That seems wrong, but what can one do with only two choices?  All in all, it seems like this election is a push.

But on to happier things…  I finally signed a form to take off 12 months of service from my commitment, since I did not fully complete nuke school (how many really do?) and I’m told it should have no problems being cleared.  So that makes October 24 my “half-way day.” For fun I think about what I could do afterwards, and seems limitless. I think about breeding dogs with you on some Colorado ranch, getting my teaching license in Illinois, writing to John McCain and Ray LaHood to aski to best way to run for state rep. in Illinois, to help the people from my home area.  I think about how old my parents and friends will be, and what my first apartment will look like.  I imagine writing, opening my ubiquitous restaurant.  I fantasize about if other places are indeed better, like Canada or Australia.  I realize I’ll be 28, and more and more how young that sounds.  I wonder sometimes what a job would actually be like, and if I’ll have been stunted by always having my life structured by a naval Plan of the Day (I hear that people, and more than you’d think, that have been in 20 years don’t last long on the outside when they retire– sort of a Shawshank condition I think).  Two months have already gone by here in Norfolk, which seems so fast, but I’m more careful than most, because I feel this is a dangerous job, and I want to know how so many things will turn out.  I always sort of dreaded this idea, the of the monolithic “fleet” out there, waiting for me for whenever my marathon schooling era finally ended.  It was so unknown, and seemed cold.  I like the simple things more, finding some time to steal away to do the crossword from the Virginia Post-Dispatch or the Washington Post, or excited about the new glasses I’m getting out of the Navy (they are replicas of John Lennon’s, from “his” glasses collection).

Well, please write back as you are able, I’ll be here.


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