Thursday, June 19, 2008

You have GOT to be kidding me...

Today will go down in history as the SECOND time in my naval career where the detailer has dropped a bomb in my lap and made a run for it. (Aside: The "detailer" is the guy sitting at a desk at Navy Personnel Command in Millington, Tennessee who decides where you are going for your next tour of duty.)

The first time this happened was just after we moved to the DC suburbs for my last shore duty. We had JUST bought a house in Ashburn, VA, about 20 miles outside the beltway to the WEST of DC. Our household goods had JUST been delivered. I hadn't even reported to my new command yet. Then I received a voicemail from the detailer that went something like this: "Yeah, hi, Kevin, congratulations! You're the submarine force's nomination for the flag secretary position at the Naval Academy. The USNA offices will be contacting you to set up an interview with the admiral. Oh, and I'm going on leave for the next two weeks, so I'll talk to you when I get back. Hope it goes well, bye!" Nice. Input from the service member neither required nor desired. There was a week or two there we were really stressed out and wondering if we were going to have to pack our stuff up again and move to the OTHER side of the beltway so I wouldn't have a two hour commute to work at Annapolis. Luckily, I didn't get that job. The detailer dropping that in my lap without even asking what I thought and then taking off on leave just really drove me nuts.

Fast forward a couple of years to this very afternoon. Remember the detailer has recently told me I'm staying in Hawaii. Although we didn't really want to stay in Hawaii, we have come to terms with this and were moving on. We stopped shopping for houses on Realtor.com. LW started working on reservations for our timeshare vacation in January here in Hawaii. LW started making a long honey-do list for things she wanted to change around the house since we were staying for a few more years. I started working on some of those tasks over the last couple of days - like moving furniture around two nights ago. Last night, I cancelled our reservations in the Navy Lodge. I had made reservations for us as a placeholder for the last couple of weeks I expected us to be on the island before transferring, but I didn't need them anymore since we were staying.

So I get this email from the detailer this afternoon...

In essence, it said something to the effect of, "Yyyyyeah, hi, about that job in Hawaii I was going to send you to? Yyyyyyeah, not so much. Admiral ___________ called and picked someone else by name he wants to take that job, so that's off the table. Well, I'm going on leave now through next week, so give me a call the week after next and we'll see what we can work out for your next set of orders."

Um...

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

I think I must really be a pessimist at heart.

Case in Point #1: All the past week I've been trying to focus on the positive aspects of staying in Hawaii, but I was still grimacing over the fact that I really didn't want to stay in Hawaii. For example, I was really annoyed the other day when I was drooling over all the HD channels available now on Dish Network, only to find out that you can't get most of them in Hawaii.

Case in Point #2: Now, again, am I trying to focus on the positive aspects of NOT staying in Hawaii. We didn't WANT to stay in Hawaii in the first place. Still, my thoughts are in turmoil right now not knowing where we're going next. At least when we thought we were staying in Hawaii, the path ahead was clear and we could plan accordingly. Although the path wasn't the optimum path / not the path we had chosen, at least we knew which path we were taking and where we were headed. Now, that's all out the window. It's like we've discovered that previous path was washed out by a landslide and there's a heavy fog set in for the next week, so we just have to sit and wait until the fog lifts (when the detailer gets back from leave and I get some orders) to start evaluating the new path we're going to take and making appropriate plans.

Keep in mind, we're about 2 months from wanting to have our household goods and our car packed out and shipped off the island if we're heading back to the mainland, so it would be NICE to have ORDERS so we could reserve the move dates we want. Summer is a big time for PCS (Permanent Change of Station) transfers with a lot of people moving, so a lot of the move dates are already reserved at this point - there are only just so many moving companies on the island.

Argh this is frustrating. I know the Lord has a plan for us... I just wish we knew what it was.

I'm going to go make those Navy Lodge reservations again...

10 comments:

Chap said...

Sorry to hear it, man. That's pretty uncool. You got anybody in your corner to call and ask WTFO?

Also, a shipmate back in the day did a tour in HI, didn't want to go back. Got orders to a boat in HI for the next sea tour, got his wife reconciled to it, then when at SOAC I told him what the detailer didn't: said boat was doing a homeport change right after deployment to Norfolk.

Ouuch.

fastnav said...

Sorry to hear it XO. Checks with chart though doesn't it?

I'm still waiting to hear back from the detailer as well. Luckily, I'm still six months out, but all I've gotten so far is the email of "Where would you like to live?" Haven't heard anything except crickets since.

Best of luck to you and the family!!

lilbro said...

Sorry to hear about that. Keep the faith. Things will work out. I enjoy the site. Make sure those darn TPS reports are in order... Yeah, I'm going to need you to change your plans at the last minute... Yeah Good luck mate.

Mom said...

I'm so sorry to hear this. Hope it all works out with an East coast billet.

divrchk said...

That sucks. Hopefully, once the detailer comes to some decision, you'll have orders very quickly so that you can arrange the move. Also, your mom doesn't want you living on the west coast? There are jobs for you in SD, right? Good luck and I hope the week passes quickly.

C said...

Our old XO had that kind of issue up to.. I think it was a month before leaving our command? Ugh. I'm sorry to hear that you're having to deal with this. I hope you get a good job out of it in the end!

E.P. said...

You know, you'd think that by the time you got to be an XO, there would be few enough jobs and few enough people that this sort of thing just wouldn't happen....(except for the normal perturbations when someone gets fired)

blunoz said...

My pastor at our church back in the DC suburbs of Northern Virginia has been praying for us to come back to DC, so he was pretty happy to hear we're not staying in Hawaii. As far as the stress of the uncertainty of our future, he offered this verse:

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11)

a_former_elt_2jv said...

Sorry to hear dude. Keep the faith, and any gig that gets you off the rock is best. Obviously anything that keeps you off of IA duty if best!

Caffienated Cowgirl said...

My dear friend, here is what I told the husband about this - if you are ever in a position of power, like this admiral, and try to pull a stunt like that, I will kick you square in the butt.

Learn from this. Make the Navy better :)