October 28, 2004

Hola! I hope all of you are doing well…and at least getting started on your ERAU applications (if that applies to you). Today (10/24) is my birthday…woot!…which means only 2 more years to go 😉 Things around ERAU have been pretty busy lately, and I’m proud to say we’ve been hurricane free for about a month now. Homecoming weekend is coming up November 5-7, there will be a lot of airplane static displays and all that fun stuff, so if anyone is looking at making a campus visit, now’s a good time + the weather is cooling down a bit and is perfect. Look for me in the color-guard. Hooah Special Operations!

This week is Biketoberfest…it’s impossible to get around Daytona. My friends and I left the dorms yesterday around 1:30 in a futile attempt to go to the beach. It took over an hour to make what should have been a 10 minute drive down International Speedway, then we drove around trying to find a parking spot that wasn’t filled with bikes, rather unsuccessfully. We gave up around 4 and made our way through the traffic again. Maybe next weekend. Seeing all of these bikes makes me want to get one of my own..better start saving now if I want to get one before Bike Week.

There is certainly always something to do around here. Ocean Deck is my current favorite. I’m not really a fan of clubbing all that much, so Ocean Deck is a nice relaxed atmosphere right on the beach with lots of live music. We went to Pleasure Island (part of Downtown Disney in Orlando), which was fun, but half the clubs are limited to over 21.

Classes are good. Remembering to go/waking up on time is another story, but I’m doing pretty well. I had my first speech in COM219, and I was completely unprepared for it. I walked in late because Lead Lab ran late..and walked in just as the person before me was finishing up. Not fun. But mid-terms are over (they were easy, no worries), so everything is a lot more relaxed now, and I really feel like I’m getting to know my professors. Same goes for my advisor, we’ve met quite a few times and she’s awesome. **Ask for Mary Theokas** I’m trying to work in a semester of study abroad, while still keeping my ROTC scholarship and she’s been very helpful in finding the right people for me to talk to and get this thing done. Working in Career Services is also proving to be pretty helpful. I’ve gotten to know all the program managers, so when it comes time for my Senior Co-op/internship, I think I’ll be pretty set! The people here are absolutely amazing. I was really hesitant about coming here. I had planned to attend The George Washington University in DC and changed my mind…the decision became even harder when my best friend decided on UMD, and I didn’t want to give that up, but I have met some awesome people down here. We’re all in the same boat and I consider myself lucky to call them my friends. It’s a little awkward at first, but living with these people 24/7 certainly helps break through those barriers..

Special Operations is still intense. I think I talked my neighbor into trying out in the spring. We divided up into rifle team and colorguard.. and I’m part of the latter so between homecoming and Veteran’s Day coming up… we should be pretty busy. I definitely feel like I’m improving on the team, and it has made me so much more prepared for everyday ROTC in terms of uniform wear, core knowledge, drill, and confidence. We did a Group Leadership Project (GLP) the other night. It was so much fun..we had to get from 1 point in the woods..pick up a package…and drop it off at another point…without getting captured by the ‘enemy’. It was all about escape and evasion so we had to memorize the code of conduct for POW’s. I was the last to get caught and put up a pretty good fight, but if you want to know what really goes on, you’ll just have to come out for the team at some point.

President Bush came to town last weekend. I got to go through the College Republicans and hear him speak, which was awesome. We’re going next weekend to rally support throughout Volusia County. Those of you that are old enough to vote, you know what you need to do..

As always, melcg2004 on AIM, pugh754@erau.edu, Have a lovely day.

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About Melanie

**Age:** 18 **Hometown:** Military Brat - currently NJ **Favorite Movies:** Office Space, Dogma, Boondock Saints **Favorite Band:** Yellowcard - anything punk or emo **Career Goal:** To fly in the Air Force - and to be President.

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