Aloha Everyone!!! Yes, it has been quite a while since you have heard from me. This post is going to catch you up on all that has been going on. Forgive me for taking so long to catch you up. Hope you all have been well.
I moved from Hawaii. Oh I know, sad news. Well sad and happy. First, lets get to the reasons why I left Hawaii. For those who do not know, I am a US Navy Sailor. I’ve been a sailor for nine years; spent 15 months at Fort Meade, Maryland doing photo journalist training; five years aboard two ships in Yokosuka, Japan; and three years on shore duty (meaning I am not assigned to a ship) at Pearl Harbor). Depending on one’s job with the Navy, you are required to spend a certain amount of time stationed aboard a ship. When that time ends, you are given 2-3 years on shore duty orders as a way of allowing you to spend time with family, go to school, wind down, etc., while doing your Navy job on shore. Whether you’re on a ship or on shore, at some point during your last nine months at your present command, you begin your selection window to determine where you will be stationed next.
For many jobs, including my present one, you select your next assignment based on available projected losses. So, just like I am leaving in nine months, someone else is leaving their command in nine months as well. That’s how certain places open up. During this window, I’ll see various commands that are available and select my top five. Three years ago, my top five choices were all Hawaii commands, thus that is how I ended up stationed in Hawaii. This time around, I could have selected to remain in Hawaii, but I like the opportunity to live in new places. Thus, I selected ships in Bahrain and San Diego (Spain and Italy were not available). A few weeks after I make my selections, I am told whether or not any of my top five were chosen. My top choice- Bahrain- was selected.
By the middle of November, I had a rough idea of when I’d be leaving Hawaii. I did not know I’d be sent to San Diego for a month of intense training to assist me with the job I’d be doing in Bahrain. So, I had two months to prepare for not just a relocation to Bahrain, but also a temporary assignment in San Diego. When we do a permanent change of station (PCS), the Navy pays for all our personal belongings to be shipped to our new duty station, Car, motorcycle, clothes, books, everything I tell the movers to pack gets sent. Prior to shipping my personal belongings, I researched and saw the majority of apartments and villas in Bahrain are fully furnished. Despite my comfortable attachment to my chaise lounge and memory foam bed, I had to sell those items, along with giving away six suitcases of clothes, some cookware, and other affects. Phew!
Stressful? Yes. I’m a sailor without wife and kids, and these moves are always stressful. Hats off to the families who do this. You really don’t feel relieved until you are on the plane, headed to your next destination.
I’ve been in San Diego for a little more than two weeks. Before I joined the Navy, I lived an hour north in various parts of Orange County, California. This has been a homecoming of sorts. My first weekend was spent visiting family members in Los Angeles.
My second weekend, I decided to visit Joshua Tree for the first time. Can’t believe I never went here in the nine years of lived in So Cal.
This current weekend I stayed in Costa Mesa with my great friends Jeremy and Cindy. Did some great eating and drinking in Huntington Beach, as well as seeing an amazing sunset at Huntington Beach pier with my longtime friend, Karen.
It’s been awesome being here. I’m exploring San Diego more than I did a decade ago. This is a fine city with amazing food, culture, beaches, and a friendly atmosphere. I hope this gets you somewhat caught up on how I have been these last few weeks. I’ll be posting more about Joshua Tree, Orange County and San Diego tips, as well as wrapping up those Oahu recommendations. Mahalo!