Where In The Hell Is Guam

In March 1990 I was assigned to Anderson Air Force Base Guam.  The first thing I said after hearing the news was where in the hell is Guam. I researched everything I could find about the tiny little island in the South Pacific. Guam is thirty miles long and one mile wide at the narrowest.  Now that’s not a lot of land. You can stand on one side of the island and see across to the other side.

My son was a senior in high school so Garry and our daughter stayed in Colorado Springs until he graduated. Garry and I drove the car to Compton to have it shipped to Guam.   Then we took a taxi to the airport. There I went one way to Guam and he headed back home to the kids. I had never felt so alone in all my life. I think I cried all the way across the ocean. I should have saves the tears. The reality of being alone  hit me when I arrived in Guam. The minute I got off the plane I was struck with hot steamy humid air. I was drenched in sweat before I collected my luggage. I don’t think I was dry until I left that God forsaken place.

My sponsor took me to my room in the barracks that I shared with a very unfriendly girl. I tried to talk to her and all I ever got was a grunt. I finally gave up and kept to myself. By now I was really feeling sorry for myself. I was a million miles from my family, living on a tiny island that was extremely hot and humid. To top it all off small earthquakes occurred several times a day.

I was so miserable I had my daughter come over about a month before Garry and Larry did. It wasn’t long before the whole family was on Paradise Island too. Then the fun began.

Let me tell you a few things about Guam that is not written in the books. First there were the boony birds. These are black birds that swoop down and attack your head as you’re walking on the sidewalk. They don’t really hurt you; just scare you half to death. Second the boony pigs.  Just ask our son about them. He and his future wife were in a tent on the beach, with only a hammer to defend themselves, when they were attacked by the wild pigs. Then there are boony chickens, dogs, cats, cars, and anything else that originated in Guam, or was left there was called boony.

We can’t forget the typhoons that hit the island several times a year. They always arrived during the Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays. Try cooking a Thanksgiving dinner on a steno burner, it doesn’t work too well. We would be without power and water for weeks at a time. It was the military’s job to clean up the island. After a day in the heat, with no running water, or air conditioning, everyone began to smell a bit ripe.

One of the good things about Guam was we saved tons of money. We were able to pay cash for a new car when we left. The beaches and water are beautiful. The locals called Chamorro are the most hospitable people we had ever known. You could drive down the road and stop at any house that was having a fiesta (party) and be welcome. Those Chamorro sure knew how to throw a party.

There our daughter Lorrie met and married her husband Bruce. She was able to have a beautiful wedding thanks to my sister Linda and our Momma for making all the flowers and decorations.

Garry and I left the island in October 1992 as empty nesters. The Navy kept Lorrie and Bruce there another year.  Larry, his wife Laurie, Rick, and son Eric were stationed in Germany. We moved back to where we started our married life “Missouri”.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. tsonoda148
    Jun 21, 2011 @ 01:36:10

    This was all during the time you and I lost touch. I knew you’d went to Guam but didn’t know anything else. Very interesting to read about your time there. Did you ever see many snakes there. I heard a few years back that there were a lot of snakes there. I don’t know if it was true or not though.
    Good post.
    Love ya’s,


  2. Garry
    Jun 27, 2011 @ 17:25:16

    Guam was a unique experience for me. It was my first overseas adventure as a dependent instead of a sponsor. My fondest memory of guam was the closeness of the militay community, both the airmen and the locals who were employed on Anderson. There were a lot of good times and great parties.

    Babe’s Hubby


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: