Just a few days ago I arrived at Camp Colt in Pennsylvania for my basic training. My unit has a lot of my buddies from my hometown. Our commanding officer, Lt. Holland, told us that we will only be in basic training for two weeks because the need for soldiers is so great over there in Europe. We're goin' to work hard to get ready on time.
Army life isn't quite as bad as it's made to be. I guess livin' on a farm my whole life kinda prepared me for it. You just do what they tell ya, and don't complain, and they don't bother ya, unlike real life. Who knows? After all this excitement, I don't know if I'll ever return to the old borin' farm. I could even make a career out of the Army if I felt like it. Hell, I can shoot straight, obey orders, and march half-decent. Who knows what I could do? The possibilities are endless.
But right now I have to focus on my job, and that's gettin' ready to be shipped off to Europe. We keep hearin' reports on how them Huns are givin the Brits and the French a hard time, and how bad they need us over there. Every night I dream about bein' a big war hero and chargin' the enemy lines like my grandpa did back in the Civil War.
I feel so alive, like I'm finally makin' somethin' of myself. When I was back on the farm I saw only a dull future workin' on the farm every year. The only things that seemed to give me hope was thoughts of far-away lands I saw in the theater or read in books. Now I'll finally get to see all those places that I've been dreamin' about for all those years.
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from Diary of a Soldier