We finally got Gunnar's orders! Our family will be stationed at Fort Bragg North Carolina. This was definitely one of our top choices. It's where Gunnar was stationed the first time around (way back when) so he knows the area and it's a reasonable, although still long, drive back to Ohio and our families. Fort Bragg is the largest military base in the US and it's basically like it's own town. Which is a good thing because everything I hear about the nearest town, Fayeteville NC, is less than spectacular. We will be just a few hours from the ocean though, which is a very nice bonus. North Carolina is huge, as my mom and I learned last night looking at maps. It seems like everything is a few hours away. I've got a lot to learn about the new place! At some point Gunnar decided he preferred Fort Carson, Colorado because many of his Army buddies are being stationed there. I think North Carolina will be a good location for us though, and I can't wait for Gunnar to show me around his old stomping ground!
I started yesterday trying to learn about on post housing etc. To say I am confused would be an understatement. There are waiting lists for much of the housing on post. Some are reasonable though and quite doable since Gunnar reports for duty Oct. 23rd. We were hoping for 10 or 12 days of leave but his orders say he'll have over a month! I am still waiting to find out if that is actually true - seems too good. So I learned that there are 10 different neighborhoods at Fort Bragg. We are eligible for certain neighborhoods based on Gunnar's rank. It seems like a fairly complex set of rules and regulations. I did request a welcome packet, so hopefully that will give us a clue where to start. I looked about about a dozen different websites, neighborhoods, floorplans etc to try to figure out where we should apply to live. Then my attempt to fill out the housing application didn't go too well because it was full of tons of abbreviations that still make no sense to me. I wish Gunnar was here to help me figure this stuff out.
We have just slightly more than 3 weeks till his big graduation and then our mini beach vacation! It seems like 3 weeks shouldn't be a big deal, after 4 months of being apart but in fact just the opposite is true. It seems like time has never moved so slowly. Every day is dragging by. I know it's much worse for Gunnar though. He has this week of training and because his least favorite drill sergeant is back with his platoon, it's been miserable the last week or so. He is so close to being done and so fed up with this lifestyle. No freedom or free time, even when they don't have training (Sundays for example) he still has to stay in the barracks the entire day. Occasionally he get a 3 hour pass, maybe once a week and can head to the PX for some Starbucks and people watching. I can't wait to get him away from there so he can properly relax and enjoy himself. 23 more days!!!