John finished Boot Camp on Friday and we were there for the ceremony. He is home for ten days, then the adventure continues. The ceremony was stirring and the Marines are impressive. They give you the impression that if you are not one of them, you hold your manhood cheap. John’s immersion in the Marine ethos made him thirty pounds lighter and two feet taller. It was great fun on the long drive--he talked for hours on end--listening to his characterization of the mud and the dirt and the massive effort demanded and given, and the the new language acquired. He also talked of the transformations brought about by the wily D.I.’s in all the men, how they taught that every man’s duty is to the Corps, yet how every Marine’s soul is still his own. I note in passing how hard that is to pull off, how noble, and American the attempt. He also mentioned that his fellows named him, but more on that later. Welcome home, John. Semper fi.