what is remembered of the briefings my first full day in
Oh! Oh! I am going to the 21st Infantry Division in IV Corps to be the Senior Engineer Advisor.
After another soggy lunch at the snack bar, we get issued our equipment. I get my choice of weapons, either a carbine or M-16, and I take the M-16. It is the first M-16 to go to the Delta, so I am told. I get a poncho and poncho liner, which are to be used in lieu of a sleeping bag!
The jungle boots I am given are half a size too small; as is the flat advisors hat. And I am given some jungle fatigues, with the shirt to be worn outside the trousers. There is a tailor on post (this is a post?) and for a few cents apiece, name tags, U S Army tags, and MACV patches are sewed on. Then in the small PX, I buy black insignia!
Everyone else in line before me is issued a field jacket, and when I am not given one, the supply sergeant tells me where I am going I won't need it! Everyone else looks at me as if I am a pariah, and I begin to wonder why I should be different.
I am told to be on the bus at 0 Dark Thirty for a ride out to Ton Son Nuit to catch the Delta Express, Flight 440!
Another greasy dinner and we watch something inane on the screen, and back to the small room with the lizards in the same position.
So ends my first full day in Vietnam. And I am a short timer, only 364 days to go. (No, no, dear reader! Don't do the math! There's that damn extra day because of leap year! 'tain't fair!)