One of my jobs around the school-house is to challenge intruders. This is normally easy, simply finding out what they're doing at the school, and most often, helping them find something. The other morning a concerned parent told me that she had noticed an unsavory type hanging out shortly after the last bell, and I told her I'd keep my eyes open. So, during the final hour, I noticed a young man who seemed out of place. He was dressed in blue jeans and a white tee-shirt, which is not the school approved dress, so I watched for a minute before I approached him.
Then, when his back was turned, talking to a young lady, I approached. "Excuse me, young man, can I help you find something?"
He turned and I recognized him immediately. One of our alumni from last year. I put my hand out to him. "What are you doing, Slick? I figured you'd be in the sandbox by now."
"No, Officer D," he shook my hand, "not yet. I got a little leave and thought I'd come flirt with the girls."
"Well, okay," says I. "The Marines are always welcome here. You let me know if you need anything."
"Yessir, I'll do that!"
With that, I left him to his flirting. He's a good kid and was an okay student, a reluctant scholar. Yet, he made the grades and finished honorably then joined the Marine Corps. From his ramrod straight demeanor, Parris Island didn't hurt him one bit. I'm glad to see the kids I worry about make a mark for themselves.
Like I told him, the Marines are always welcome. Likewise the Sailors, Airmen, and Soldiers.