Because you know you want more, I gathered up the rest of my letters from an Air Force friend who used the name ‘Michael Dudikoff‘ on the return address. His letters, always humorous, often a bit flirtatious, were motivating reminders that I had friends who cared in all corners of the world.
I’m sitting here in my office on a Friday morning only a hop, skip and a jump from your tent. Think about it. I’m on the same continent as you! Never thought about it that way, huh?! You know, it’s funny. I have zero interest in Asia or its history, but here I am in Korea. Maybe it was intended for me to be here and find out that the Orient is nothing I expected…
Currently, I’m working semi-hard on this pet project that a General wants done. He went to the commissary one day to get a bottle of Jack Daniels and they were cleaned out. So now I am researching how our ration control system works and our vulnerabilities to black marketing. It’s kind of interesting actually, and I don’t mind being tasked with it. I’m also heading up our unit’s PT plan and execution. [The] Air Force is going back to the good old 1.5 mile run, push ups, pull ups, instead of that weak ass bike… For me it’s no biggy because that’s what I’ve been doing for the last four years at the Academy. For others, well, let’s hope they get to the gym soon.
Going to work every day isn’t bad. Since we’re agents, [the] uniform is usually pants and a polo shirt. If I want, I can wear BDUs but most days I choose the former. I usually work 0730 to 1630, but there are times when a case needs to be done immediately (sexual assault, suspicious activity, porn, counterintelligence, etc.). I usually tag along. I’m enjoying my time in Limbo because I get to watch but don’t have to do any of the typing and other administration. Hopefully, I’ll qualify on the Uzi pretty soon. Yeah Baby! I’m not a gun nut but it definitely beats sitting in the office.
Well, it’s Memorial Day Weekend. I don’t have anything going on, but we’ll see what comes up. Write whenever you get the chance. Let me know what you are currently up to. Hope you are well.
24 September @ Night
I haven’t written all that much in the last week. Sorry about that. I’m trying to wrap things up these last few weeks before I go TDY to the States. There’s a whole bunch of stuff that seems to be caving in on me. AHHH! Oh well, I’m looking forward to training…just hope I don’t screw it up and let down those that hired [me]. I’ll be working my ass off for sure.
My sponsor and friend who showed me the ropes and helped me on this first assignment left… That leaves me as the Officer and Second in Command. Before, I was just the “Other Lieutenant” but now it’s kicked in that I am the LT. Not that anyone relies on my decisions, but it’s still something to consider. I have a lot of respect for the enlisted and especially those who have been sticking with it for longer than anyone looking for the “easy life”…
Well, I’m going to make this letter short. I’ll write you soon. Take care.
Friday, 17 October
I know it’s been a while since I last wrote. I hope you still remember who I am. Well, I’m not longer in Korea (at least for a little bit). I’m currently in training for my job, and believe me, it’s not a vacation [on] TDY. The training is intense, six days a week, and the days are busy with academics, field training, and PT. It kind of reminds me of a watered down version of the Air Force Academy! It’s good though, and I’m really trying to take it for what it’s worth…that was the most ambiguous statement. What I meant was to learn instead of cram and flush.
I also feel like I’m in the best shape of my life. I’m eating right, exercising, and my drive and motivation is going strong. Damn, I sound like a Jenny Craig commercial. I’ll try to trim the hokey, “Golly, Gosh” statements! What else? Umm, still looking around in this sometimes big, sometimes small fish bowl for the single ladies…Not that I discriminate against the taken girls, but it makes meeting the parents awkward (wink). Maybe I’m too picky, or maybe I’m just not aggressive enough…What do you think? I’ll try to put it on my things to do. How are you doing? I haven’t received anything from you…I hope you are well and that you’re still going strong. Be safe.
I pulled this final note out of chronological sequence because I felt it would wrap the series of letters up nicely. I lost contact with my friend but sincerely hope that he did ultimately find the right girl, excel in the Air Force, and continue to travel the world.
16 September 2003 @ 10:10 P.M.
DON’T STRESS OUT!
I’m sorry I haven’t written in awhile. I think I wrote five days ago, but hopefully I’ll get back on track. You know what it is? I got my TV/DVD to work again and it threw my multimedia abstinence off. Damn that flickering device! It does all the thinking for you!
I watch AFN (Armed Forces Network) and they have these annoying informative ads like “Don’t shake the vending machine…it’ll fall on you!” Or “Did you know D.B. Cooper was the only successful skyjacker in history?” Anyway, a commercial came on today while I was setting my new Ironman Timex watch (I was excited…I like gadgets). It depicted a man running around in the brain flipping levers and switching switches. The ad was about how stress can affect your mood, memory, and health. It came to me in one simple answer: stress is a psychological mirage that does not naturally come with new issues and mental workloads. So…just remove it from situations that arise because it’s not real. That simple! Of course, then I came to my senses and decided it was moronic and we’re not robots, but wouldn’t it be nice to not worry about things we cannot control or are so silly we don’t really need the stress? That would give us the ability to accomplish goals or just get on with life, huh?
I don’t know, I thought I had a good solution there for a split second. Just don’t stress out. Well, besides the fact that I wish you were here partying in Korea instead of there, I had a solid weekend. Movies, relaxing, walking and shopping around. I don’t really shop, I execute a goal of getting a specific thing and then dining out… Other than that, I’ve just been working, or trying to. I’m kind of tired of showing up and talking with co-workers. Maybe I’m in a lull right now. I’m going to tackle tomorrow like it’s my first day though. Work at something new, smile, and kick some ass. Damn, I sound like Richard Simmons! Holy crap, I AM Richard Simmons!
I try to imagine what you’re up to, what your place looks like, and where you sleep (in a non-creepy way). I wonder if my first letter has reached you by now, if you are reading with pain or joy. Mostly though, I imagine you’re happy, healthy, and laughing like you did in Colorado Springs. I hope so…
- Letters From Michael Dudikoff (Part 1) (bloggingpioneer.com)
- Daughter’s heartfelt letter about soldier mom sparks surprise (huffingtonpost.com)
- A Picture of Life Through Letters (bloggingpioneer.com)