For the sixth year now, I have put in for warrant officer. The process is pretty much the same year after year, the only real change this year is I am in a combat zone. So my picture was done in the desert MARPAT uniform and not all of my medical precommissioning checklist can be completed here. For the most part the rest is the same, still have a fairly large document of stuff about me in terms that most military people can only read, have an interview with officers that were once enlisted(mostly objective questions), and there is always extra red tape and a few hoops you need to jump through. In a way, it seems the officers try to make the process as hard as possible so you can not be one of them, you know, crossing into the "dark side". I received a good recommendation and today it has been forwarded to "group" where they will endorse it, send it to wing they endorse it and then it arrives at Headquarters Marine Corps. The board convenes in June the results are posted in late July. Yea! I figure the worst thing "they" could do is appoint me.
I stopped taking or you could say I stopped putting the patch on my arm. I have been still taking Zyban, but sleeping hasn't been that great. One the most common side effects is lack of sleep (another is lack in sexual desire). All in all, I think I am doing pretty good with that.
Q-tips, snack food such as breakfast bars, popcorn, beef jerky, magazines, blankets, paper filter masks (paint face masks), just about anything you could think about you might need in a desert that is high use or disposable are items myself and others need or want. The basic stuff like razors and soap, along with anti-bacterial wipes, cleaner, hand soap are used everyday and is needed. If you have ever been to Yuma, Arizona, think about what you needed there and then subtract about 10 degrees for the winter (30-40s) and add about 30 degrees for summer (130-150s) , that may help in figuring out what we need or want. There is no Wal-mart, no Fleet Farm, and no Applebee's. At the base I am am at, there is a Pizza Hut and a Burger King, but I am not eating in a place that has no food inspector and the closest cattle is in India where they are sacred.
I am listed in http://anysoldier.com/WhereToSend/ you can look up by last name, country, or many other unique ways. I am supporting about 20 Marines.