Europe Communicator's Ball So I almost got out of going to the Ball that my battalion was hosting. I'm a non-communicator (non-Signal Officer) at a Signal Battalion, so I had a decent excuse not to attend. Not to mention, that I was preaching at chapel the next day. A few days before the ball my battalion XO asked me to come to her office to talk about it. The chaplain that was going to say the invocation (my Brigade Chaplain) was unable to do so at the last minute due to flight delays and I was next up since my battalion was the host for the ball. I used all my excuses, "Ma'am, I have to preach tomorrow." Okay, Chaplain. "Ma'am, there are no tickets left." It's okay Chaplain, you don't need a ticket to go. "Ma'am, there probably aren't any seats left." It's okay, we'll make sure you have one. Lol. I guess I better go home and put my ASUs together. Now mind you, balls are not really my type of thing. I'm a non-drinker and they're usually just a reason to throw a wild drunk. But if I do go to a ball I prefer it be a unit ball--that way everyone knows what they're getting with Chaplain Bailey and it's everyone that I personally know. This ball was a Europe-Wide ball and included some VIPs traveling to Europe from the States. The NETCOM Major General Barrett (2-star) was the guest speaker, and there were generals, Colonels, and Lieutenant Colonels everywhere. Not really my cup of tea, but sometimes a guy has to play ball at a ball. So I did. It wasn't that bad and although it made for a jam-packed, tiring, and eventful weekend (especially after preaching). Me visiting with the Brigade Commander, COL Khatod in the Receiving Line prior to the start of the formal portion of the ball. MG Barrett is in the foreground. My prayer. A few of my table members...SPC Charles, NETCOM Soldier of the Year and SGM Velasquez. Bastogne War Museum The Ruples and us decided to visit Bastogne (Battle of the Bulge) last Saturday because it's only a few hours from here. It was our first time in Belgium and Luxembourg. The weather was crappy and we ran a bit late because I had to visit with a Soldier that morning and it set us back. We weren't able to visit the Madasson Memorial, the remainders of the 101st foxholes in the forest, nor the American Cemetery in Luxembourg City (GEN Patton is buried there) like we wanted to, but we will definitely revisit before we leave Europe. We did get to visit the Bastogne War Museum, but didn't get many pics. It was still an enjoyable time for Jude, Josiah, and me. Justus lost interest pretty quick, but he's 4 so that's understandable. It was a decent museum overall. I think the Verdun one in France was better, but this one wasn't shabby. The struggle and loss of life at these battle sites where these museums and memorials now rest is hard to fathom. HHC Field Exercise Last but not least, last week my company was in the field for a field exercise. Compared to the exercises at Riley this one was easy-peasy. Small area. Manicured lawn. Lol. The only thing that made it bad was we had no heat for the sleep tents and it rained and was in the 30s all week. I was successful staving off hypothermia and surviving. Here is our happy face "going home from the field" picture from Thursday right before we headed back home. 1LT Birnberg (HHC XO), CPT Li (S3 Staff), and myself. Big news coming on the horizon, but it's not time to post it yet...prospective PCS locations and jobs and other life news. More to follow at a later date. Love, peace, and crabs.