Thursday, August 16, 2012

One Month at Fort Sill

Today marks one month of living at Fort Sill, so I thought it'd be a good time to reflect on some general impressions. My overall impression is that I am thankful that these are TEMINS orders and we have another duty station within sight. Downsides of living in a hotel: mini fridge, and I miss my kitchen. Some perks of living in a hotel: free breakfast every day and free dinner on Wednesday, and someone else makes the bed and vacuums! One quarter of this is our home for the duration of artillery school (4 months and 3 days left!).

I think the sky in Oklahoma looks extra blue.
Fort Sill is in a pretty remote location, 45 miles from Wichita Falls and about an hour and half from Oklahoma City. Lawton attractions include some national parks, casinos, and Walmart (that's right, no Target). We haven't made it to the national parks/wildlife reserve yet, mainly because up until this week, it has been 105-115 degrees every day. Hopefully we'll make it out there soon since it's starting to cool off!

So, here's what we have done. Literally everyone we know who has been to Fort Sill for any amount of time told us we had to go to Meers. It's a restaurant in the middle of nowhere (a pretty nowhere) that's been around since 1901. The area used to be mining country, and the restaurant has been named "best burger in Oklahoma." They raise their own cattle, and the beef is really lean. It was definitely a great  burger, and it's so big that they cut it into quarters for you. Luke had a giant bowl of cobbler, and he said it was really good too.

This is some of the scenery on the way to Meers (with no filter!). It was a pretty drive.
Before Luke started artillery school and we had weekdays off, we went to the Lake Elmer Thomas Recreation Area, which is on post but about 12 miles from where we live. This place is slightly (extremely) larger than Quantico. At LETRA, they have boat rentals, a water park, cabins for rent, camping areas, etc. We rented a canoe and spent the afternoon on the lake, and I even helped row for about 70% of the time. It was a really relaxing afternoon!

About a week after arty school started, we went to a Welcome to Fort Sill reception. At said reception, we had about $3 worth of meatballs, cheese, and pineapple and then learned the following day that we had to pay $30 for this lavish spread of appetizers. This military tradition will never cease to annoy me. Despite this, the reception was a great excuse to buy a new dress because I conveniently forgot to pack one, and all of my formal dresses are sitting in storage in Hawaii. I am so jealous of them!! 

Before we got here, we heard that Brad Paisley would be doing a free concert on post, so we had something to look forward to! The concert was last night, so I consider it a great close to our first month at Fort Sill. He opened with Camouflage, which was obviously perfect for a concert on an Army post. Despite sitting on the ground waiting for the concert to start for 3.5 hours, it was a lot of fun, and he put on a really good show! 

And here are some other random pictures I've taken since we've been here of nothing in particular. 

Powers Hall! Again, super blue sky

After a storm

Overall, Fort Sill is not great. Lawton is pretty boring, and I could understand alcoholism in this area. However, it's not all bad. There are some great gyms on post, the library is providing me with literary entertainment, and living on post close to everything is nice. We've really loved going to rodeos, and there's a frozen yogurt place here. Most importantly, my husband is home for dinner almost every night, so I am happy. We're going to keep looking for fun things to do here, even if it means playing Settlers of Catan in our hotel apartment.

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