Where two years ago my life was regulated by staff meetings, videot-eleconferences and the meal times of what ever DFAC I was able to tolerate at the moment, today my life is bounded by docking and on board times. Yes the concern of matching meal times is there, but faintly on the horizon since it is possible to get food 24/7 on a ship.
It is still under two years ago since I redeployed from Afghanistan via the Air Force in one of their few charitable acts (not being known for their willingness to make life easier for non-MEDVAC patients but having enough sense to fill extra seats since it really didn’t cost them any extra effort).
I turned in ACUs – in fact I have gotten rid of essentially any and all clothing that even remotely resembled my uniforms in favor of the uniform of a civilian. There are few mementos in our house. Those that up on the kitchen wall I am planning on replacing with photos and art from travels.
My uniform now is Jack Wolfskin casual made up of t-shirts, long & short sleeve shirts along with pants in varying shades of grey and black with the occasional bite of red thrown in for luck. For dress up, there is a skirt/top in mostly black with a couple of color accents. I have jogging gear where the only color really comes from rainbow shoes just for cheeriness.
I now have an iPhone which I keep on airplane mode most of the time just to avoid roaming charges but it seems tho that I still bound my life with schedules. I still know where I am going to be for almost every day between now and next year at this time. The difference is that I am making the choice and am not at the whim of some faceless bureaucracy in DC or some commander who is more concerned about their own evaluation than they are about those who work for them.
Perhaps in a couple of years this phase of my life may be over as well, but there are so many places to go and ports to see ….. in my personally chosen choice of clothes…