Twentynine Palms is an easy target when it comes to describing somewhere miserable. However, this isn’t to say that there aren’t other places in the Corps equally as miserable, it’s just that some are more subtle about it than others. In the words of the great Michael Caine:
Camp Lejeune remains one of the only bases I’ve never visited, but I’ve heard that Jacksonville puts the township of Twentynine Palms to shame when counting meth addicts per capita. Every base has some miserable little town outside of it that exists solely to house BAH dwellers, barber shops and shady car dealerships to cater to the Marine population, and Lejeune is no different.
Jacksonville is, from I’ve heard, the worst of them.
Believe it or not, most Marines would even place Twentynine Palms on their wishlist ahead of Camp Lejeune (unless they stem from the area). It shares a lot more in common with Twentynine Palms than you would initially think. The weather is shit and miserable, being offensively humid in the summer and bitingly cold and wet in the winter. Like Twentynine Palms, it is fairly isolated from anywhere actually cool. However, Twentynine Palms even gets an advantage here by being relatively close to Los Angeles and Las Vegas (within a 3 hour drive), making weekend excursions fairly easy. There is no such luxury for Camp Lejeune, existing alone in the swampy armpit of east North Carolina.
Maybe it’s just because I’m a west coast native, but I’ve always thanked the gods I never ended up in such a place.
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