Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Bataan Society Dinner

This past Saturday Damm's ROTC group held their semi-annual Bataan Society Dinner. All the cadets get suited up in their formal military outfit-still green, they haven't gotten the new army blues-and their dates do likewise. I had my Angelina-Jolie-whilst-pregnant-outfit on, i.e. the flowing style. Can wear the dress while skinny or enormously pregnant. I think my mother-in-law has a picture somewhere .....

Anyway, MIL let me borrow her fur jacket. Real fur jacket. She didn't actually buy it, it was a gift from a rather wealthy old lady. I was a bit worried about wearing it because the dinner was at the college campus and college kids are usually the idealistic ones AND the ones willing to throw ketchup on you for wearing dead animals, but nothing untoward occurred. That coat was really, really soft, in case you wanted to know. I couldn't stop petting it. I guess that sounds kind of weird. Really warm, too. I don't think I've ever worn a better-insulated coat.

Ever onwards. We arrived and got to see all the pretty people, mostly ladies but some gentleman dates as well, all dressed up in their finest. I think, by virtue of my dress being black, that I was among the more elegantly dressed ladies there. Except perhaps for the red dress, worn by the girlfriend of one of Damm's friends. It was pretty stunning. We milled around for a while, socializing and letting my feet get really numb and sore from the high heels I was wearing. Finally got to go inside the dining hall and stand some more. I guess I could have seated myself but the cadets had to wait for the colonel to sit down and everyone else was doing the same, so I followed suit.

Colonel sits down, colors are presented, and the Grog bowl is brought out. The Grog bowl is a toilet bowl. Multi-colored, bright toilet bowl. The cadets proceeded to pour all manner of edible but combined nasty stuff into the bowl. You see, if you messed up on one of the many rules for formal dining you had to take a drink out of the Grog bowl (the cadets had scoured that thing clean at least 3 times that week :). It was pretty gross. Thankfully Damm never got called out so I didn't have to smell it.

After that the food was served. I think it would've been good had it been fresh, but it tasted like it had been cooked several hours previously. Even the chocolate cake was dry. /sniff. But we didn't pay for it, so I can't really complain. The salad was excellent :) During that time we were regaled by a cadet known for his cowboy-style poetry, really more ballad. When he writes his poems down I'm buying all family members one for Christmas. There were skits, parodies of the cadets and cadre. It was funny, but I imagine it would've been even funnier if I had known all the people being parodied.

After that a brief speech by the Colonel Gavly? Gatly? something like that. Apparently tanks can fly if you hit the bank just right. He got off the hook for that one because his immediate superior was also guilty of trying out the flying thing. He regaled us with more stories of young men acting stupid and also of the moments that made him proud to be a soldier. It was pretty good.

After that was dancing. I had wanted to stay but 3 hours of sitting in a hard chair wiped out my reserves. I don't know about other pregnant ladies but for this one that's a feat worthy of a poem. So Damm asked permission to leave early and I gratefully hobbled out. Well, I think the hobbling didn't start til we were in the parking lot and out of sight. We drove to the in-laws, shed our glamorous look, and became once again parents of an almost 2-year old who was not happy about being moved from the warm bed.

All in all a fun evening, and I look forward to more occasions like this one, especially since the next one won't be til I'm unpregnified. Thank the Lord. Hallelujah. Heehee. There are too many athletes around campus. I see them running and want to join in, and then remember I can't, not really. 5 more months. That's not that long. I can totally do it. And then the Bataan Death March will be calling (marathon run mostly in sand, considered one of the top 5 hardest marathons in the US).

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