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Friday, February 15, 2013

Nenana - Two shorts and a long - backstroy

Human Skills - Technical Skills - Interviewing for Technical Skills - Conceptual Skills
- Writing Skills- Interviewing in general - Ability to Lead

Nenana – Two Shorts and a Long details the events when brains are not engaged, an occurrence involving an experienced petroleum handler//truck driver who makes a small mistake and ends up feeling the brunt of it from numerous sides.

On a return trip of four hundred plus miles on a lonely lightly traveled road may cause the brain to quit functioning. But a good four or five mile walk should give one time to contemplate their situation and cause one to readdress their situation  before becoming the butt of the story. Don’t believe tit for a minute. This doesn’t always happen. When the brain shuts down, there is no telling when it will become awake again.

Petroleum distribution is not entirely difficult. One should attempt to stay awake during the tenure of their challenge.

The adventure here involves close support for remote operations more than four hundred miles from home by a singular and well experienced individual. He knew his job and had some six plus years experience doing that job.

We were stationed at Fort Richardson just outside of Anchorage, Alaska. The mission required travel up the new Fairbanks Highway to Fort Wainwright and field refueling support of an Infantry Battalion and supported units during a summer exercise (approximately 22+ hours of daylight, hardly ever getting more than dusk-like outside) and almost around-the-clock activity—stressful for the cheechako, but routine for the experienced petroleum handler (POL man).

I had been in touch with my guy at least every other day and had discussed his performance with the commander in the field several times. All had been OK. I had zero concerns that everything was going according to Hoyle—no worries.

The real story takes place during the trip back to Ft Rich; did I mention the four hundred mile trip. A great deal of the road at that time was still gravel and travel while not fast was pretty good for the most part. I knew it would take him some time and he might even be on the road overnight—it did get darker the further south he traveled. He had his gear and had authority to pull over wherever he found appropriate—capability was not a problem.

Once again, I was serving as Staff Duty Officer (SDO) at battalion headquarters when the call came in. Well actually I had been out in the area making my rounds and the Staff Duty NCO had taken the call. He had my recall instructions when I returned. That’s when the adventure began.

We will discuss human and technical skills in addition to how one should go about interviewing for those skills. We will also look into conceptual skills and writing skills and I hit briefly on the ability to lead.

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