My Musings

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A Bad Case of the Mondays

When I arrived at work yesterday morning, it was about 25 degrees outside. I know. I know. It's not as cold as where you are at but let me just tell my story here. I shuffled from my car down into the office at the Arlington National Cemetery Administration building as fast as I could. I didn't want to spend any extra time outside than what I absolutely had to! I hate the cold!

As soon as I got in the office, I picked up the phone and began dialing the uniform phone number. Each day, depending on the weather, the uniform changes. And since there are fifty or more soldiers marching in the cemetery at any given time, someone has to put the word out what the uniform is so that we all look good together.

Monday being as cold as it was, I knew that the uniform would be overcoat and trooper cap. The trooper cap is the winter dress cap that we wear in cold weather. It actually snaps under your chin. I think it looks dorky but I have to say that it is very very warm.

As I was almost finished dialing, I heard a beeping sound coming through the phone. Someone must be trying to call in. I hit the button. "Arlington National Cemetery. This is private Cardot." I said.

"Hey, Cardot, this is Chaplain Horton. I was just calling to let you know what the uniform was for us on this first mission." I have been working with Chaplain Horton on a daily basis since the first day that I was transferred to this job over three weeks ago. He a real joy to work with.

'Great' I thought. 'Overcoat and trooper cap!'

He continued, "We're just gonna wear the blues blouse and the ceremonial cap today. The other Chaplain that I am training today doesn't have an overcoat that fits."

"Uhhhhhhhh......Okay...uhhhh....sir." I said. 'Blues Blouse!? That's our summer outfit. Doesn't this guy know that it's only 25 degrees outside! ' Of course, I didn't say that part out loud.

"I'll just meet you at the grave site," he concluded and hung up. 'Oh well. I'm in the infantry. I've been cold before,' I thought.

The mission went just fine. I was able to control my shivering for the most part and the service didn't even take too long. At last it was over and we all headed back to the car, my Arlington lady, the two chaplains and myself.

When we arrived at the car, we were all extremely cold and ready to get warmed up. I reached into my pocket to pull out the keys and suddenly a shocking revelation came over me...I had locked the keys in the car. 'I'm a dead man!'

"Sir," I said. My face was probably already turning pale. I really thought that I was in big trouble. He stared back at me. He looked as though he were really worried about what I was about to say. "I locked the keys in the car."

A huge smile swept across his face. He actually started laughing out loud. Chaplain Horton just looked at me. Here I was with two high ranking officers, a Major and a Lieutenant Colonel, and I had locked them out of the car in freezing cold weather without any coats on. He just laughed.

"Don't worry about it, son. It's not the first time this has happened." And that was it. About ten minutes later a backup key arrived and we all went on with our day. Live and learn.

When I arrived back at the office, I found out that the other driver had left his minister at the grave site of his funeral and forgot to give him a ride back to the office. The minister had to hitch a ride back to the office from a cemetery employee. I guess that we all had a bad case of the Mondays!

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  • I pray the rest the week gets better for you.

    Lord Bless...

    By Blogger Christopher Cline, At 6:10 PM  

  • Yeah. Me too. Today was much better.

    By Blogger Nicholas Z. Cardot, At 6:34 PM  

  • Oh, wow! I've had days like those...

    By Blogger Nicole, At 10:51 PM  

  • I can't decide which is worse you locking the keys in the car and having to stand outside in the cold for ten more minutes or the guy who left the minister at the grave site.
    Both were a good laugh. Glad that your week has improved.

    By Blogger Diane, At 6:41 AM  

  • I know. It made me feel a whole lot better to know that I wasn't the only one goofing up that day.

    By Blogger Nicholas Z. Cardot, At 7:58 AM  

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