From One Course to the Next

I’ve been back in Borden for the past 2 months now. It was a very quiet drive back. I have a love hate relationship with my new barracks. I hate how far away it is from everything, but I love that I don’t have a roommate and how quiet my building is. So that kinda balances things out a bit?

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I wish I could say the food had gotten better at the new kitchen. But I can’t say that as that would be a lie. It’s not terrible but it could be a lot better. Most of the food is either over cooked or over salted. Occasionally they’ll prove me wrong and make something amazing.

I started my next course just a few days after arriving, which is a good thing. I didn’t have to stay on PAT for too long. The new CO has really made a lot of improvements from what I can tell. They’re pushing through more courses, getting people trained quicker so they can go do OJE (on the job experience) which will be beneficial for when their QL3’s begin.

Once again I am the only girl on my course. 17 guys and myself. I think it’ll be the same for my QL3’s, which also got bumped up! I was supposed to start that in July but now it’s May! Almost exactly 2 weeks after I finish my current course I start my 3’s! I’m very excited about that. I wasn’t looking forward to having to wait 2+ months for my next course.

My new course, Common Core, has been going fairly well. I’ve been generally scoring above average on our tests. This course is designed to train everyone in the core air force trades some core knowledge. We’ve learned about different tools and how to us them, as well as general safety. Other things we have been learning are marshalling air craft, hanger protocols, doing paperwork and basic air craft maintenance.

The course is more relaxed compare to POET. But POET was very condensed. I believe the school’s CO said what we learned in the span of 8 months would have taken almost 2 years if we went to a civilian college. And on top of that the grade standards were higher as well. You go to any normal college and a pass is usually 50-60% but for us if you were under 70% that was a fail.

I’m also not saying that Common Core is easy either. Some things, sure but that’s because I had previously learned it. Other things like how to do lock-wiring were brand new to me, so it was a little bit of a struggle. Not to mention all the different maintenance forms we need to know and how to fill them out properly. I’m more so enjoying the pace of my current course. Not being tested every 2-3 days is kind of refreshing.

I’m in the last leg of Common Core called BEET (basic electrical & electronic training). This is where all the AVS techs on my course should excel. The theory thus far has been essentially a refresher for us, which is not a bad thing whatsoever. It re-instils what we already know.

In other news I got approved for on base housing so my hubby can move up here!

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It’ll certainly take a strain off of things. Commuting home on the weekends is such a hassle. Especially when people no longer become reliable for rides home and I’m stuck taking the bus. It’s a long bus ride and means I don’t get home until almost 11pm on Friday night.

I’m hoping this coming week proves to be better than last week. Wont go into details. Basically it just progressively got worse and worse. One thing would happen, then another and another. Like how I forgot my meal card on my desk back in my room one morning, so I had to go grab hat before lunch then at lunch I knocked over my glass of water turning my lunch into a cold soupy mess.

Certain people didn’t help either with my mood, which progressively got worse too. I just about snapped on a few people. It’s exhausting being tolerant all the time. I let a lot of things slide because I don’t like conflict. But it seemed like everyone was just trying to push my buttons.

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Improving!

Well I’m definitely improving at the gym. My endurance is better, I can even do more weights!

My trainer can be a little too optimistic at times. Like today we used a new machine. I have no idea what it’s called but it’s got weights and you do squats. We all know how much I love squats…insert dramatic eye roll here. So he puts 90lbs on the machine. I do one. It was hard getting back up. I do a second one. It was very hard to get up. I do a third and I almost can’t even get up! He brings down the weight to some a little more manageable. It was still heard and I hate it.

We worked on my biceps and triceps. That where I noticed my improvements the most. I was actually able to do them fairly well. By the 3 set I began to feel exhausted, but he also added an extra 5lbs at that point. Regardless, I’m making improvements and that makes me happy. Even those damn crunches and planks are getting a little easier. I said a little, they’re still a pain in the ass to do. But that because I’m not doing “conventional” crunches. I’m doing weird ones. I don’t know to describe them, but they’re meant to work more than just your abs.

My trainer like to torture me with crunches and then planking. Like I’ll do a set of crunches and then go and plank right away. So freaking hard! I at least got to 20 secs while planking today. May not sound like much, but considering just over a week ago I could maybe only do it for 10 secs, moving up to 20 is awesome! It was hard as hell but awesome!

Change of Pace

First, my legs hurt so bloody bad over the weekend. You have no idea! Trying to sit down was a near impossible task. Trying to stand up, just as difficult. At one point I wished I didn’t have legs so the pain would go away. But I fully expected that. I was prepared mentally for the pain. I knew it would come and make me wish I was dead. But the pain is a good thing. It’s telling me that I’m working my muscles, I’m strengthening them, making them stronger!

But yea, glad I didn’t agree to go to the gym on Saturday. My trainer wanted me to, but no, just wasn’t going to happen. I went yesterday. It was harder for sure, and I learned some new things to do to help me with my workouts. I used an interesting machine called an assisted chip up. It’s probably gonna be one of my go-to machines because yea, it’s a hell of a workout. And it would be nice to be able to actually do a chin up unassisted one day. The key to the machine is that the less weight, the harder it is. I know, most machines it’s the other way around.

Oh, he made me do some more lunges. I was not happy. My legs were still sore from Thursday. But these ones were a bit different. They’re called split lunges. Still painful, but not nearly as hard to do. Well they were hard, but that was because I was in pain! We worked my on biceps and triceps some more. On one of the machines, I think it was the triceps extension, he kept adding on more weight! I was struggling as it was! and he just drops an extra 10lbs on top! May not sound like much, but when you just started out pretty much and your arms are already tired from working out, an extra 10lbs is hard! This was towards the end of our session, by the way.

To end my session we went into the studio for some crunches! God I hate them! Sit ups, I’m fine with, it’s the crunches that are hard. Oh and then he wanted me to to plank afterwards. He wanted me to hold it for 30 secs. I couldn’t. Well, I could have but my hips were to high and lowering them made it more difficult. I honestly did try and gave it my all. Even after I collapsed I got back into to position, tried to keep my mind off the pain, but my body was just like “Eff this I’m done.”

Changing gears, work is going well! I worked yesterday and today. I also work the rest of the week! Most people wouldn’t be so happy to work five 5am shifts in a row, but it means I’ll be working over 20hrs this week! AMAZING! It’s the small things in life that make me happy as you can see. Well when you consider how many shifts I got on average from my last job, this is like the a goldmine! When I worked for David’s Bridal I would work 1, maybe 2 shifts a week, working only 7-14 hrs. And this was during their “busy” season. Talk about major disappointment. I figured I’d be getting more hours because they would be “busy,” however, they were only busy on Saturdays and Sundays apparently.

So can you see why I’m happy? And my coworkers are honestly awesome people. I hardly know them at this point but they are so nice and friendly. Even the managers are awesome! Well, I don’t think anyone will be my manger from Benix/Bowring. She was the best manager I’ve ever had. I miss working with her. I miss everyone from there…well almost everyone. I don’t miss our DSM so much, but I don’t think anyone would really miss her. She was your typical DSM, so use your imagination.

Back on to the topic of working out. I can definitely say that I’m so glad I’m doing this now. I’m glad I’m trying to get myself into shape. I would have been re-coursed the first week there. I know I wouldn’t pass that initial fitness test you have to do. I’d be on warrior platoon for probably 4 weeks, which would add to my 12 weeks already. I would prefer to get my BMQ done in those 12 weeks thank you very much! I am seeing improvements already, which makes me one happy girl!

And the Verdict is….

Okay let’s try this again! I had a draft typed up but apparently it didn’t save. Any ways, this morning I wrote my CFAT. Nervous doesn’t even begin to describe what I was feeling. I arrived around 7:25am, very early but I would rather be super early than late. I wasn’t even the first one there.

Around 8:00am we were let in and they began to process our paper work. They checked our IDs, made sure everything was filled out properly, photo copied our transcripts etc… The person I was dealing with was impressed with how organized I was. I had everything separated with paper clips in my folder. I guess they must be use to disorganized applicants?

Waiting to write the test ramped up my nerves. I kept worrying if I would score poorly and not qualify for my trades. The first 2 sections were okay. I’m pretty sure I aced the spatial part. I good with spatial stuff. I must say, the practice spatial questions in my book were a lot harder than on my test. Well, maybe a bit more difficult… It wasn’t easy, just not as hard as I was prepared for.

The problem solving was painful. 30 mins is not enough time. I’m sorry, but 30 mins for 30 problems is barely doable. I was at question 26 when I noticed I only had 2 mins left. I wanted to freak out! But I managed to answer the last 4 with just seconds to spare!

Then it was the waiting game. We had to wait about 20 mins to find out our results. They call your name, you go into a little cubical and find out what your fate is. I was ready to hear the worst. I was ready to be told “Sorry, you didn’t score well enough.” I tried to keep my composure as best I could.

My results? I scored well. I scored REALLY well! I qualified for all my trade choices! I wanted to jump up and dance! I was over the moon with joy! I kept that in and to myself. Need to give a good impression. Now is the waiting game. I have to wait for them to give me a call to book my medical and interview. He said it’ll probably be about a month before I hear anything. But given my score and my first choice is an in-demand job I may get in soon!

It’s just such a relief to be done this test. That’s what I was most worried about. Now I can focus on getting back into shape. I’m not worried at all about my background checks. I’ve never be arrested, never done drugs, don’t have any substance abuse issues, I have no debt, etc… I’m an ideal candidate.