Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif. --
Well, taking this photo was a nightmare. The problem wasn’t the the twins in the photo, Jared and Jordan Chambers. They were actually really sweet and accommodating to me.What made it a nightmare was a series of unfortunate events that leaves me, to this day, shaking my head in embarrassment.
When I heard about Jared and Jordan I had to get a photo and talk to them, see if I could make a story about it. How often do you get two Marine brothers, twins, in the same unit, company, and platoon, in the same MOS?
My lance corporal and I grabbed the government vehicle and headed to Range 220.
Getting to Range 220 is fairly simple, there is only one road to take after passing Camp Wilson. But if your co-worker gave you the wrong directions, in the opposite direction, on the largest Marine Corps Base in the Department of Defense … you get lost. Thanks Jackson.
After running into two very different and incorrect infantry battalions, we got correct directions and were two hours late for the interview. The sun had already gone down, making taking photos of the twins difficult and I was feeling like a typical dumb blonde apologizing to a staff sergeant for the mix-up.
Jared and Jordan just laughed at me and shook their heads, though I had a feeling they were resenting me for keeping them up during their rest period in the freezing cold of winter, but they didn’t show it.
I can’t print this story without a picture. I didn’t have sufficient light to take their picture so I had no choice but to come back the next day.
Well, at least I know where I’m going now.
I took the newest member of my office with me the following day. I should take her with to show her a thing or two about photography. Getting there wasn’t a problem as I figured it wouldn’t be.
Jared and Jordan, looked like they had been in the field for a few weeks, dirty and tired, which is perfect for photos but they were not enthusiastic about posing because they were self-conscious. They toughed out the cold and waited for us anyway.
When I was done torturing them I said thank you and hopped back into our government vehicle. YES! Nothing went wrong today and we can head back to the office to finish my story.
Tap! Tap! Tap!...What now?...
A Marine with the unit’s motor transport section was knocking on our window. “Did you know you have some flat tires?” SOME flat tires?!
We hopped out and saw that the two back tires of the vehicle were flat…dang it.
Marines from the battalion seemed to come out of the sand hills to gather around these two female Marines who needed help…great as if it isn’t embarrassing enough.
The issue was we only had one spare tire but even that wasn’t accessible because of a lock that is standard in most government vehicles, and we didn’t have a key for it.
At least the vehicle’s heat is working….
We endured awkward stares from what seemed like the entire infantry battalion at the forward operating base we were at passed by to check on us.
Two hours later, we were rescued by a coworker and our vehicle towed.
That wasn’t even the end of it. Yes, there’s more.
I spent quite a while at my office answering to a furious gunnery sergeant I could have sworn believed I broke glass bottles myself and drove over them to pop the tires just so I could waste a work day.
While at the time, it was the perfect storm for me, looking back at last winter, I can laugh about it. Good thing the photo turned out.