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Soldier Qualification Serial 04 August, 2010 Part 7

Wow, I haven’t written on this series since march. I want to finish it, but it will probably take one more after this serial. These next couple serials are not going to be as properly written as my last serials. Not sure why I don’t want to write it as proper as the last ones. Guess I just want to finish this series, and kinda losing motivation on it. So I know the last serials where not properly written either. Bad grammar, incorrect spelling, bad writing form. Well this will probably be worse.

Fast and furious, with less correct story telling methods as even the last serials. So lets finish off the story with this serial and the one after and commence.


Cuyler Callahan

Warning: If you are offended by swearing, and some graphic scenes and scenarios, don’t read!


Soldier Qualification 05 August 2010 Part 7

The next stuff that happened of interest on my time in the field on SQ was setting up barbed wire defenses and flares. Sergeant Moy was with me as I set mine up. Now I felt quite nervous. The stuff they use in these flares is white phosphorous. If I set off the flare on accident while setting it up, I’ll get that stuff all in my skin all over my body. The fire doesn’t stop burning until the phosphorous runs out. Water won’t do anything at all to put it out. There is only one way to get burning phosphorous out of your skin; cut it out.

So of course I’m pretty nervous, I’m setting it up. Sergeant Moy actually gets a bit of a compasionate side I guess you can say, and tells me to, “Calm down Callahan. It’s alright, just take it easy.” He lead me through the process and I set it up. For some reason I get more nervous setting up flares then throwing grenades.

Later I go on a day recce with Sergeant Song. I’m the radio man so I get the big back pack radio. Not really sure how much it ways, but probably close to thirty pounds. It really isn’t much of a problem for me to carry. My problem was the damn gortex boots I put on. Earlier that day I put gortex boots on my feet cause my regular Combat Boots were wet from my recce the night before. They were broke in from wearing them before, but my feet don’t do good in Gortex at all.

On our recce my feet turned into hamburger. They got blisters all over them. The back of my heel felt like it was getting shred to pieces. Sides of my feet got blisters. The bottom wasn’t to bad.

After we got to our recce point, which was a bridge, we sat and talked with Sergeant Song. I leaned against the bridge railing and actually managed to fall asleep basically standing up. “Hey Callahan. You alright brother.” Sergeant Song said. I, startled, stood up real fast.

“No problem Sergeant.”

“Good lets get back.”

We got back to camp and just as we set down our equipment, we get a big old “Ruck Up!” from Warrant Kellog. Next thing you know, we are walking extremely fast, then running, shuffling, with our rucksacks. My feet are bleeding, and I can feel my boots digging into my feet. It’s a quick three kilometer ruck, but it seems like forever with the pain in my feet. One and a half kilometers in, they stop us in a forest and get us to set up our hooches, crawl in, and sleep. I sleep, for about 5 minutes, then a hear that whistling sound. The sound we all hated with a passion.

“Pack up, and Ruck Up!” Sergeant Moy yells. We pack up our hooches, our kit, ruck back up, and walk, run, and shuffle back to the camp. I can’t remember how I made it through the pain. It was bad. I am not totally sure how to explain the pain my feet were in. Maybe I could say it felt like they were cut with knifes and had salt rubbed in. Every time I took a step, my feet felt like somebody was cutting them.

We got back and Warrant Kellog started yelling. “SO YOU KNOW WHAT THAT WAS FOR?” Most of us looked at each other really not even knowing it was punishment. I myself thought the Warrant and staff was trying to feel time and give us some bullshit, for training purposes. But I guess it was meant for something else. Nobody answered the warrant. Most people didn’t know what to say.

“It was because I went down around the trenches and found kit laying all over the place! PUT YOUR SHIT AWAY YOU FUCKTARDS!” Warrant Kellog actually looked like he was going to turn red. But I remembered him telling us to put our shit away, and I guess some of us didn’t, so punishment was called for.

“Now go get some supper,” Kellog said more calm. We got our punishment, he was satisfied.

After supper I changed my boots. Wet or no, I was wearing my combat boots instead of those god forsaken gortex. I vowed from that point on to never wear gortex again. I took off my socks, painfully and looked at my feet. I had a blister on the back of each heel that was the size of a toonie, and stood up about twice a toonies width.

I but on extra socks to cushion the rubbing. Even with my combats, they would still rub now that I had a blister already. Some people swear by gortex, others hate it. I’m a gortex hater. They are basically water proof combat boots. At least that is the way they look. I’m not sure what the big difference is in structure cause they look very much the same. But what ever it is, it fucks my feet bad.


That night on sentry, shit went real weird on me. Sleep deprivation kicked in, and I had the hallucinations we all talk about. Now mine was not so much my mind making stuff up, but more of my mind playing extreme tricks, along with me being to sleep fucked to tell between dream and real life, or the mixing of them.

So we are sitting in our trench on sentry. Myself, Knight, and Myre. I’m getting that half sleep half awake effect where I’ll see with my eyes, but my brain will turn it into something else. Then I’ll snap full awake, and look around, then doze off again. I never fell fully asleep, but things were getting bad in that department. I start having dreams while awake.

First I didn’t even think I was in a trench on sentry. I thought I was on a night recce following some others through the dark. I don’t know how long that went on, but I remember just walking, and talking with somebody. I had a C-9 and bushwhacked in the dark, trying to follow those in front. I even remember my tille hat getting knocked off my head.

Next thing I know, I think I’m in my trench. But I actually was the whole time, but I thought it was a dream at the time, cause I snapped to and was back in my trench. From my trench to my trench. I know it seems weird, but one trench I was half asleep, the other I was awake.

Then I’m in my hoochie sleeping, but I wake up, in my dream, and I move around trying to get comfortable. Then I sit up and I’m worried that I should be outside not sleeping. So I’m sitting there trying to figure out if I’m dreaming or not. It was so fucked. Like I said, I’m half asleep half awake. I’m dreaming while awake, and enough so that I have mind enough to sit and wonder if I was actually dreaming or not, if I was suppose to be outside.

But the whole time I am in my trench, Knight beside me, Myre beside him. I’m back in my trench again, this time awake enough to realize all the other shit was a weird dream. “Woah,” I said.

“What?” Knight said.

I didn’t want to look retarded. “Nothing, nothing.” I pop in a pinch of skoal hoping the nicotine will wake me up. I look out. I start to see shadows. Running shadows, hundreds of them. They are getting closer, they are over running the trenches. Why is nobody firing? “Shit we are sentry”

“Ya we are man,” Myre says.

“No no.” I am afraid I’m dreaming I don’t want to shoot. I don’t want to get charged for a negligent discharge. So I yell, ” STAND TOO, STAND TOO!” People need to get up and fight. I’m freaking out.

Knight looks at me, “What the fuck man.” I’m freaking. I’m thinking we fucked up big and that the defenses are over run. Both Myre and Knight are freaking cause I’m freaking, but they don’t see what I see.

“STAND TOO! STAND TOO!” I yell again.

“CALLAHAN, shut the fuck up!” Sergent Moy yells at me. I point at the hundreds of men running over the defenses.

“They are everywhere Sergent. Hundreds of them.”

“That is fucking smoke Callahan. I threw it. It is for us. Your seeing shadows. If we had hundreds of GD staff to play as enemy force, well that’s never going to happen on our budget. Don’t worry, your fine. Now watch the fucking defenses, and no more false calls.”

Now thinking back on it. I’m not even sure I got what he said to me properly. He told me the smoke was for us. It was night out, real dark. Nobody can see the smoke- just me the shadows. Did he really throw smoke out for us, or am I just fucked and thinking that’s what he said, but he actually said something else.

After this little dream charade of mine, where I saw stuff I thought was real, but was a dream, saw things from shadows, I could see how mistakes can be made where innocent people are killed in war. For instance, the shadows. What if I was in a real war, and that was just some civilian walking down the road, but the shadows gave him a gun, a helmet? What could happen then where I make the mistake and actually shot? Or the opposite where there are actually enemy forces attacking the fort silently, but I just thought they were shadows and didn’t want to bother sleeping friends. What then? I think sleep deprivation is probably one of the best weapons to use against your enemy.


I hope you enjoyed. Watch for the series finale coming up… not sure when. Just watch for it.

Cuyler Callahan

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