A little background info about this trip . . .
While down in Ecuador, I received an e-mail from a good friend of mine, Mike. His National Guard unit was being mobilized for Iraq. I wished him luck and reminded him to watch his six.
Then, a couple of months later, I received another e-mail that they would be leaving (the unit) in a couple of weeks. By this time, I was back in the states, working a temp job that was turning into a job offer. I expressed interest to Mike about going with them. And then really thought about it, and decided that sounded like a really good idea.
So, to make a long story not as long, I flew to New Orleans and field enlisted into Alpha Company. We left for pre-mob that next Monday and I never looked back.