Thursday, April 8, 2010

Bittersweet

Oh my dear, sweet, Army.  So continues our on going love/hate relationship.  Although, this time it's really my husbands fault, I still blame you!  It's easier to be mad at you than to be mad at the hubs!

So, back in November, we met with the Engineer branch manager to discuss our options for our next duty station.  Because my husband volunteered for a MiTT (MIlitary Transition Team,  a group of guys who worked 1 on 1 with the Iraqi Army, training them to be self sufficient) deployment, he was "guaranteed" to get one of his our top 3 choices of duty station after he finished the ECCC (Engineer Captains Career Course).  Our top 3 were:
1. Japan
2. Hawaii (his)
3. Germany (mine)

With the limited number of Army units in Japan, we knew it was a long shot, and I really had my heart set on Hawaii or Germany.  Well during this meeting In November, we were told that there was 1 spot in Japan.  This spot was in Okinawa and we were told if we watned it, it was ours, so we jumped on it and walked out of our meeting with giant smiles across our faces.  So I started cautiously planning our move to Okinawa, Japan, knowing that the Army was likely to throw us a curve ball.  It couldn't really be as easy as it seemed, could it?  If you're an Army (and I'm guessing military in general) wife, you know that you don't normally walk into a meeting and get EXACTLY what you asked for.  It just doesn't happen, does it?  Well in February, we got our orders to Japan and it looked like we'd just hit the jackpot!  We started the process of getting our grumpy old pup ready to move to Japan, put our house up for rent and I went to town, researching and falling in love with the island that was soon to be our new home.  I started following bloggers who live in Oki, to learn about the island through their experiences and start making friends over there.  I did the dumbest thing a military wife can do and planned for something 6+ months out, thinking things were "set in stone".

Then, yesterday, we went to our scheduled transportation brief to learn that our orders did not state that we were going to the 10th ASG in Oki like we thought, we're actually going to the 9th Theater Support Group at Camp Zama, 25 miles from Tokyo.  WHAT!??!  AYKM?!?!?  HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?!?! I spent the next 30 minutes with my jaw on the ground/letting out an endless string of four letter words (my husband escorted me outside and to the car before I started dropping the F bomb).

I'm glad I waited until today to post this.  Yesterday, it probably would have contained lots of those four letter words.  We actually had to sit around waiting until 8pm local time to call to Japan and find out "for sure" where we're going and during that time, I wasn't the most pleasant person to be around.

Why is this bittersweet you ask? Instead of year round warm temperatures, hanging out at the sea wall, visiting the pineapple park, getting to know Heather, taking photos with Aviva and all the other things we were looking forward to doing in Oki, we will be dealing with a varying climate,  exploring Harajuku, visiting Tokyo Disney Resort (it will be our 1st Disney experience!!!), taking the train to Hiroshima and have a much cheaper easier time traveling to Korea, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Australia, the Philippines and anywhere else we decide to go!

CAMP ZAMA, HERE WE COME!
unless the Army changes it's mind, AGAIN!

9 comments:

fancypants said...

Darn! I haven't been yet- but I was told Okinawa is like a Japanese Hawaii. The good thing is- you should be able to catch a flight to Okinawa to visit at least. I visit Zama every once in a while (usually to shop at the AAFES). It's not so bad- just a little small. But you won't be too far from Tokyo and there is sooo much to do! If you need to me to take pictures or find some sort of info that Navy person would be able to acquire- just let me know!
Oh- there are several English schools nearby- you should be able to land a teaching job or two.

The McGriff's said...

I am sad that we won't get to actually be neighbors. But I think Zama will have a LOT to offer. You are definitely right about it being cheaper to visit places. Go to Sapporo for the ice festival. I hear it is AMAZING (and cold)!! You can go climb Mt. Fuji too! We MAY try to go to Tokyo before we leave here but I would also like to go to Hong Kong Disney (we have heard it is better for the younger kids) but right now we don't have any trips planned. We went to Australia and New Zealand in Jan. and had a great time. You should definitely try to travel as much as you can while you are overseas. And you can space-a for free!!! Although a cargo plane is not as comfortable as commercial... it is a LOT cheaper though.

Ashleigh said...

I have a friend who dances for Disney in Japan and absolutely LOVES it there. I hope it turns out to be a good experience for you too!

Jessica said...

At least you don't have to pack up and store all of your winter clothes :D And like everyone said, Space-A flights are cheap if not free and can take you all over, including Okinawa!

errign said...

Well, at least there are positives about the situation! I have zero experience with the military, really, so I can't say much more than that!

Erin said...

I am sorry that you aren't getting to go to Oki, but it sounds like after enough processing you have a good attitude about the change.

trooppetrie said...

gotta love the army and the way it works

JG said...

That's so frustrating, but you will have a fantastic time just the same, I'm sure! I expect lots of pictures from Tokyo Disney! Attitude changes everything, and it sounds like you've got a great one. :)

Taylor said...

Wow.. you are way more graceful than I am. I applaud you and your flexibility!