This Girl's Navy
I want to join the reserves... but I'm worried that bootcamp will cause me to miss the end of my senior year and/or the beginning of my freshman year of college. I don't turn 17 til late November, so I couldn't do it last summer. Does this happen? Missing school for bootcamp?

Hello! I don’t think they’re allowed to do that! You’re required to have either your diploma or GED before going to boot camp. So no worries there. And if you haven’t talked to a recruiter, that’s at least a good place to start with those kind of questions—I didn’t do reserves, so I didn’t have the same concerns that you do.

Good luck to you! :)

Deployment Tips for Coffee Drinkers

I do not recommend whatever the hell they were “brewing” on the mess decks.

French press is basically the way to go, because hot potable water is plenteous. I knew one guy who had his coffee, sugar, and powdered creamer each in individual baggies and he carried them around in his french press, to measure out as he needed.

But I hate the way French press coffee tastes. I don’t know why, it’s my weird thing, but I think it comes out tasting metallic and annoyingly strong and bitter every time. I like my coffee to be smooth and balanced I guess. Plus cleaning out the coffee grounds was THE WORST.

If I could go back and do it again, I’d do some market research beforehand and choose an instant coffee that I liked. I know, I know, I used to turn my nose up at it as well. But I’m a big fan of instant coffee here in New Zealand. It’s cheap, efficient, doesn’t produce much waste, I found a nice one (Robert Harris Il Roma), and prep/clean-up are a breeze!

I’d take a whole bunch underway with me and just go to town whenever I had the 0200-0700 watch. It would have prevented a lot of unauthorized napping…

As an accompaniment, you can also invest in like a big CostCo box of those individual coffee creamer pots, if you have a fan room to store them in or something. It’s either that or the powdered stuff or learn to love it black, fresh coffee creamer will be tough to come by!

And if you stay in a hotel room in a port call, totally steal the little instant coffee packs they put in the room, and maybe even pop into a local supermarket (one of my favorite things to do) and try something new!

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Of course, you might be going on an aircraft carrier that has a barista. (??!?!?!?!!!) But just think of the money you can save by bringing your own! Also I’m betting they’re not open for the 0200-0700 watch.

13 Years…

13 years ago a bunch of kids like myself had just joined the Navy for college money, for experience, to start a career, to have a bit of fun.

My friend Kirsten captured that day best:

I watched the towers fall live on CNN. I remember that feeling of shock, confusion, denial, crushing sadness. I had joined the Navy in a time of peace and now, suddenly, we were at war.

That oath I had taken, suddenly meant so much more.

The words I had uttered just a year before….

'I…do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God. I swear that I am fully aware and understand the conditions under which I am enlisting.'

I thought I understood. When I took that oath, I thought I understood what it meant. But as those towers fell, everything changed. How could I have known that sort of evil existed in the world? How could anyone?

Today, I remember the fallen. I remember my lost innocence. I remember the fallen. I remember my fear and my sadness. I remember the fallen. I remember the images repeating over and over on tv. I remember the fallen. I remember throwing up my dinner that day. I remember the fallen.

What do you remember today?

Hi, I'm a junior in high school looking at the Navy. My brother just went to the Naval Academy with hopes to get into the flight program, and my dad and uncle went NROTC and flew F-18s. I'm not sure if I want to go into the Navy- sometimes I have an incredible surge of pride for the Navy and I want to do NROTC, but other times I'm doubting the decision. Can you give me some advice on which instincts I should follow, and how do I know if I'm "too creative" for the Navy?

You know part of the reason I joined was my dad was in the Navy as a Legalman, and my grandpa was a Navy Lieutenant. I felt pretty honored to be following in their footsteps, while still having my own experience as a nuke electrician.

I say there is absolutely no such thing as ‘too creative’ for the Navy. At 18 I wanted to make movies and thought to myself “So if I go to film school I’ll make movies about my experience so that’s…high school?!? How about I go experience something cool and unique and write about it later.”

While I was in the Navy:

  • In school, if I finished my check-outs early, I entertained my friends with poems about everything.
  • I regularly spent weekends painting and drawing.
  • Once I left a party way early, and I let everyone there know it was because I was REALLY into the book I was in the middle of reading.
  • I took a week of leave to be a part of a screenwriting symposium.
  • My notebook I had on me at all times is full of nuclear power notes plus random poems and ideas I had on watch.

And with all that I never felt like I wasn’t a part of the Navy. We all knew I wasn’t going to make it a career, but I earned my superiors’ respect because I still worked hard and enjoyed my time.

I loved using my GI Bill to get my English degree, and my final project was a [shitty][but finished!] screenplay about the Navy. I still sometimes work on writing a good one to sell someday. Just using myself as an example to say it’s absolutely possible to be creative and be in the Navy!

I can’t tell you what instints to listen to, that’s why they’re instincts. :) But if you want to do it, just go for it. Four years of Navy life beats four years of menial work/aimless college any day! Then you’re done (you won’t believe me but it goes faster than you think it will), and you can do whatever you want, with this amazing experience under your belt.

So I really want to join the Navy, but I'm a little bit overweight and need to get into shape before hand. Is there any advice you could give me? I'm scared to death of failing.. I've wanted to do this since I was 13 and I'm 22. :(

Girl, get out of your head!! You’ll ROCK the Navy becuase you clearly WANT to rock the Navy!

I’m always scared of failing. But once I actually took a few risks—auditioned for plays, got up in front of my entire school to talk, made a short movie on my own, went to boot camp—I found out that doesn’t need to stop me.

The coolest thing about life is doing things that you might fail at. Because they’re the most worth it!

Just take it one step at a time. Go talk to a recruiter. See what your options are and sometimes they’ll have programs to help you get in shape, or at least give you some motivation. You don’t have to sign anything, just talk to them!

Very few people in my inbox say they’ve wanted to join the Navy for nine years, which convinces me that you’ll rock this!

Things I’ve Done Thanks to my Time in the Navy

Blog’s been quiet because I was in Samoa for WORK helping with the UN Small Island Developing States Conference. It was really cool to hear ideas and plans for helping atoll nations deal with the effects of climate change.

And there’s always time for a plenary session selfie!

Things I’ve Done Thanks to my Time in the Navy

Blog’s been quiet because I was in Samoa for WORK helping with the UN Small Island Developing States Conference. It was really cool to hear ideas and plans for helping atoll nations deal with the effects of climate change.

And there’s always time for a plenary session selfie!

My ship date to bootcamp is December 15, 2014. I was wondering if you knew any sailors who started as undesignated Airmen/Seamen and ended up striking a rate?

I did not, so can’t really help you out there. I think almost everyone in my boot camp division was already designated, and us nukes didn’t have much to do with them—no one ever strikes nuke.

But hey it could be pretty cool, why not go for it!

Anyone else have some insight into undesignateding?

"Neither the instructors nor the students are involved in handling nuclear weapons."

*Rolls eyes*

Everyone knows that the Navy nuclear power program is ACTUALLY NUCLEAR POWER and not nuclear weapons right? No? I literally had no training in mushroom clouds. Carry on.

Probably my greatest legacy from the Navy is that when I get drunk, I tend to argue passionately for nuclear power.
americasnavy:

The first contract for nuclear-powered submarines was awarded on this day in 1951. Today, submarines like the USS Maine are some of the most complex technological machines ever built.

And they’re generally operated by 20-24 year olds! Don’t worry y’all we got this.

americasnavy:

The first contract for nuclear-powered submarines was awarded on this day in 1951. Today, submarines like the USS Maine are some of the most complex technological machines ever built.

And they’re generally operated by 20-24 year olds! Don’t worry y’all we got this.

Interesting article!

"…When I sat down with one of my senior professors in Durban, South Africa to talk about my Master’s thesis, he asked me why I wanted to write about women resistance fighters.

“Because women made up twenty percent of the ANC’s militant wing!” I gushed. “Twenty percent! When I found that out I couldn’t believe it. And you know – women have never been part of fighting forces –”

He interrupted me. “Women have always fought,” he said.

“What?” I said.

“Women have always fought,” he said. “Shaka Zulu had an all-female force of fighters. Women have been part of every resistance movement. Women dressed as men and went to war, went to sea, and participated actively in combat for as long as there have been people.”…”

Hi, I was thinking about doing NROTC and joining the navy as a pilot but I am still unsure about my decision because of all the uncertainties of the navy(how long I will be away, quality of life, what flying is like). Did you go through anything like this or have any advice? Thanks so much!

Yeah I had uncertainties before I joined, but two things helped me personally make the decision:

1. I made an agreement with myself: If I could get through 6 years of being a nuke, I could do whatever I wanted after that. Nuclear power wasn’t something I was crazy passionate about, but I decided I would give it my all for the length of an enlistment, and see how I went. I got out 7 years ago—seriously feels like forever!

2. I had a tour of a cruiser in Boston and it was led by this big fat Navy guy and I thought, ‘Well if he can do it surely I can!’

There’s always going to be doubts or questions, but I think it just comes down to whether you really want to give it a go or not. If you don’t that’s absolutely fine, but I loved my time in and I’m so glad I made that decision.

Hi! I took the ASVAB recently and may have qualified for Nuke, which is what I was hoping for. My husband is a Nuke (in Powerschool), so I was wondering how often dual Nukes get stationed close together from what you've seen? I think we would be fine, but obviously we would want to get stationed semi near each other! Do you think we would ever see each other? I know we could each talk to our detailers and try to coordinate orders, but would it actually help? I hope this made sense! Thanks!

Ooo that’s a tough one. I think there’s some policy of putting married sailors in the same region (can’t be the same ship). I might be making up that policy. But it means you could be like in San Diego and he could be in Washington state. Maybe even Japan. If he’s on subs and you’re on aircraft carriers could be even he’s in like Maine and you’re in Norfolk. If you’re both on aircraft carriers you’d likely be on an alternating deployment schedule so it would be kinda hard to see each other!

I’m trying to think if I knew any dual Navy couples…unfortunately I don’t think so, most of the women got pregnant and got out of the Navy… (Sorry, it’s just that I didn’t join the Navy in order to find a husband, produce offspring, or quit the Navy. I don’t think that’s what you’re looking for either!)

It’s possible but it’ll be tough. This facebook group might have more info than I would, and here’s a basic About page concerning the topic. Google can be helpful.

Good luck to you guys!

EDIT: In regards to the comment below, actually I think I’d disagree with you there, since chick nukes can only be assigned to nuclear aircraft carriers, and dude nukes can only be assigned to nuclear subs or aircraft carriers. So there’s no chance of someone getting assigned to Italy or somewhere else weird right out of schooling—you know you’re either going to San Diego, Washington, Norfolk or Japan as a chick, and the dudes options are those plus (if he’s going sub) Maine, Georgia, and maybe another one I’m forgetting. I mean Japan might make it suck…so really it’s probably not more or less likely than anyone else!

EDIT EDIT: Haha, honeybunchesofgoats—exactly!! Be prepared to hear about “the needs of the Navy” a lot, and no one’s going to give much of a shit about a couple just out of prototype, unfortunately. Be prepared to either fight for your right and all that, or make the best of the situation you get assigned. (Guess which one is more likely…)

sailing-camo-3:

After 6 months of intense schooling and training I have earned the right to wear the petty officer patch! I am now EM3 ⚓️🌐😊

Awesome a fellow electrician! Congrats petty officer, you made it through A school!

sailing-camo-3:

After 6 months of intense schooling and training I have earned the right to wear the petty officer patch! I am now EM3 ⚓️🌐😊

Awesome a fellow electrician! Congrats petty officer, you made it through A school!