In this post I will make an attempt to explain to you why we are no longer going to Canada, where we are going, and maybe even the reason behind my inexcusable overuse of italics.
First allow me to say that it is a wee bit confusing, even for me. And I grew up as an Air Force brat, was in the Air Force for 4 years, and have been married to it for 9 years.
So Pat the Bunny, just give up now.
And if you're not interested in the details, just scroll to the end and I'll tell you where we're headed.
For all you non-military types out there, let me give you a little background. Josh is an officer in the Air Force and is currently a captain. He has recently been selected to become a major, which is appropriate for his time in service.
Unbeknownst to me, there is a process out there called "vectoring" which occurs after the major selection board meets. During this process, a bunch of high ranking Air Force officials get together and review the records of the newly selected majors. They then choose some of those folks to groom, or "vector," toward a career path that might one day lend itself to becoming a high ranking officer (read: someone who has a captain to get his coffee).
And they have placed Josh into this category.
Note: I do not pretend to know what qualifiers they look for in the process, but I can assure you that loading of the dishwasher and keeping toenails well-groomed is not among them.
While this vectoring is not a guarantee of good career progression, it is certainly an honor.
This is where it is going to get a little complicated.
One of the things Josh needs to do as a major is apply to an Air Force school that is about a year long. When you apply, you get three "looks." Meaning, they will consider you three times to get into this school.
We were hoping that we would go right from our Canadian assignment to our second or third look at school.
"They" (being the vectoring folks) would like Josh to go to his first available school, which would start in the summer of 2012. And once he has started the Canadian assignment, he cannot get out of it to go to that first look. So "they" called yesterday morning and have encouraged Josh to decline the Canadian assignment and allow them to reassign him to a position from which he would be able to attend his first look at school.
You can imagine that as a Captain, it is a fairly interesting position to be in when you have a group of Colonels/Generals "encouraging" you to do something.
Thankfully I had my cell phone with me, or else I would never have been privy to the three minute time frame we were allotted in which to make this decision. Quite generous, wouldn't you say?
Our conversation started like this:
Josh: "Erin, do you have a (literal) minute? How would you feel if we didn't go to Canada?"
The rest of our short time on the phone was spent discussing pros and cons and searching our hearts to see if God was leading us in one direction or another.
Some of the first things that came to mind for me were some truths that had just been highlighted yesterday morning in my Bible study.
I wont go into all the detail, but I felt like I was being prompted to say yes to this new opportunity, despite feeling real disappointment at losing our Canadian assignment. And language school. And Monterey. And blueberries. And cute bilingual kids.
And so Josh got off the phone without a definite decision made, to go and pray quickly and offer his final word.
He agreed to go along with their recommendation.
Goodbye Bagotville (snicker)
Hello again, Seymour Johnson (heh heh. snort.) AFB, North Carolina.
Rockets or Chiefs, we have yet to hear officially.
I guess we done got vectored.
Oh. And I have no excuse. I just like italics.