We got our first letters from Mike yesterday! It feels so good to hear from him. It sounds like he just started his actual physical training Monday. Up until then, he was going through processing at the Reception Battallion. He said that they kept him up until 2:00am that first night he got there (after being awake since 4:00am that morning...and only getting 5 hours of sleep the night before that!). I'd be desparately searching for a cup of coffee the morning after that! He said he has his uniform and dog tags and has already gotten his hair cut. One day, apparently his 'group' was missing a person, so they all had to stand at attention outside in the snow for over an hour and a half! He mentioned that his feet hurt after that (I don't doubt it!).
He is in the Alpha 2 platoon and his line number is 101. Apparently he is addressed by his line number and not his name. Fun ;-). He also seems to be getting along well with a few guys already. He's mentioned the name Vingeault a few times. He even said that one other guy in his platoon is a 21Delta (diver), which is kind of rare since there are only about 150 engineering divers total in the Army. There's a guy, two bunks down from him, that likes to call him "chap" or "chappy" since he knows Mike wants to go back to Seminary some day. He thinks Mike should be a chaplain.
So, this was all from letters he wrote over the weekend. I actually got a call from him last night. He was very homesick for us, and it wasn't easy for me to hear over the phone (in only a 3.5 minute conversation none-the-less!). He said all the physical work was fine and he can do it, but he just misses us terribly. Lots of our love sent through letters are the best thing for him right now! I hear this far into basic is the hardest, emotionally. So, here is his address. I encourage everyone to send a thoughtul note if you get a chance :-).
SPC Graham, Michael D. 0953
A-2-10 Inf Regt 2nd Plt
495 Iowa Ave, Unit 12
Fort Leonard Wood, MO 65473
Be sure to write the number "2" on the back of the envelope and circle it. This specifies which platoon the letter should be sent to. He can also only recieve letters and photos (due to lack of locker/storage space). It's against the rules for him to recieve packages bigger than that. So, we can shower him with letters!
3 days ago