If bad guys hijack our jets and fly them into our buildings, most of us go to work the next day without doing anything about it.  After all, there are people who take care of those things, aren’t there?  We let them take care of it.  If we tried to do anything, we’d just be in the way.  So we say.


Except for a few of us:  A very few of us go to work the next day listening for the call.  Probably they will have some coffee and talk on the phone and then go home to dinner, but maybe they will hear the call.  Probably they will hear American Idol, but maybe they will hear, “The Redcoats are coming!”


If they hear the call, they will not return to their offices.  They will pick up their rifles and move to meet the new threat, just as the Minutemen did 233 years ago.  Most of us who remain behind in those offices will not even notice they have gone, as stoic humility is one of their many virtues.


A United States Army Reserve soldier goes to work each day at Allstate or Pepsico like the rest of us, but is always ready to step into another life if our country needs one more full-time soldier in a hurry.  A reservist who has not been called is free to move in the corporate (or trucking or farming or some other) world, but a reservist is always ready to be activated.


 ~ ~ ~


My wife is a reservist.  She does something with computers in the corporate world, except for one weekend each month when she does something with computers for the army.  A few months ago she told me that she would be training for a full week in April.  I imagined that they were upgrading from TerroristTracker version 2.1 to version 2.2 or something like that, so I asked, “Training for what?”


“Training to go to war.”


Every reservist is a soldier and every soldier is a rifleman.  She would go to Fort McCoy to shoot her rifle and polish a few other soldier-skills over that week.  I got permission to go with her.  We just got back.  This is what happened.






Chapter One:  Sunday.  We arrived, had dinner and then went to work.  Photos 1001 – 1095.


Two:  Monday in the M-16 rifle trainer, photos 2001 – 2050.


Three:  Still Monday, “Land Nav” (overland navigation) photos 3001 – 3159.


Four:  Tuesday morning on the “Zero Range” to adjust the rifle sights, 4001 – 4321.


Five:  Tuesday afternoon on the “Qual Range” to qualify the riflemen, 5001 – 5306.


Six:  Wednesday morning on the M-9 Pistol Range, 6001 – 6486.


Seven:  Wednesday afternoon in the Radio Class, 7001 – 7239.


Eight:  Thursday and Friday, Medical Training, 8001 – 8373.