That’s it, done with my reserve service. Well 3 more days in an office. But I’m done with old MACK semi trailers, MAN 15 ton trucks and loading them all up with anything and everything from brand new Merkava Tanks to US Army surplus jeeps.
Went to my battalion’s home base for the big release party, saw a lot of old friends and a lot of my new ones from this past month. One of the guys is a professional cameraman in his civilian life so he made us a movie of the whole mission, we laughed and cried and saw ourselves in the middle of the night sleeping outside, in the morning brushing our teeth and combing our hair in truck mirrors and working around the clock. “Margol” or Margalit Tzanani a famous Israeli singer sang us “Mizrachit” or Eastern music and we all danced and got on stage with her. The General came up to saw how proud he was. All in all it was a nice party.
I Said goodbye to everyone as they were all getting released and don’t have the 3 extra days I do… I also went home early from the party to get some sleep, while they had a long night of bureaucracy ahead of them. I said goodbye to people who would be going back to their families, their kids, their wives, and their girlfriends. They would be going back to their jobs as sysadmins or parking attendants or salesmen on Sunday, the factory workers and truck drivers would be working by Saturday and a few would be going back to the university or the unemployment office.
We hugged or shook hands, some of us exchanged phone numbers, some jotted down e-mail, and some just ignored each other. The last words “Hope next time we meet as civilians” (The optimists) or “Until the next war” (the pessimists) and some good lucks all around.
I said goodbye to my new commander who told me of my new position on the staff and what it would require of me.
I didn’t get a new rank as many did (I am a First Sgt. and although a lot of people thought I deserved it, I don’t have enough service days to go any higher) but they decided to spill some water on me as the custom goes anyway.
It’s hard to write this now, it’s just spilling all out, after a month of hard work, thinking of no one but my soldiers and their needs, being back on my own is a bit strange, eating when I want, what I want… and not just whatever’s near, when I can.
I will really miss some of it, there is something about hanging around with 40 guys working outdoors together, sleeping in tents, and eating in a 400 man dinning hall that makes you feel good at the end of the day. (Whenever it ends.)
About the politics of it all? Well, everyone has their own opinion… I think I’ll just go on and go back to my life and let the politicians, newspapers and American broadcasters worry about my so-called future.
First Sgt. Falk (Reserves)
That’s it... (until my annual 2 weeks of service in November).
Life DOES go on....