It's been a long time since my last post. Around Thanksgiving if my memory serves. Being a big holiday for family gathering, you could imagine the lines for the phones here. It took me nearly 30 minutes just to get to a phone to call people. What's worse is there is limited bandwidth and both the phones and computers share it. So, when there are a lot of people on either, it slows down the computers and disrupts the phone connection which is what happened this Thanksgiving. I was glad to hear everyone's voice that came through the line before my call was so inconveniently disrupted and eventually dropped.
Thanksgiving out here was kind of a mixed event. They put on an amazing spread for dinner with many turkeys, stuffing, potatoes, etc. Despite all that, it wasn't the same. I'm not really "part" of the unit here. I am, in a sense, in that I work for/with them but I'm not a member of it. So, on that day, when I wanted to be with family, I couldn't - not even with my new "family". Also, I wished it was just another day, one that didn't have any sentimental meaning to me. I just wanted to be able to do my job without having to think about all the other stuff back home that I'm missing. On that day, it was next to impossible. Despite how much I wanted to talk to everyone, I was somewhat glad that the connection was not stable. Next year, this won't be a problem.
Since then, there hasn't been a whole lot going on. Operations start, end, and sometimes never end. I finally got to go on one and it turned out to be a half-success. Some bad guys were rounded up but we had to leave the area before we could start the humanitarian aid portion of the op for reasons I can't really go into. The goal of the op had not been achieved so it's going to be redone at some point in the future.
This past weekend, I traveled to Baghdad to pick up some supplies and to get away from the routine of spinning my wheels and getting nowhere (or that's how it feels sometimes). It turned out that Carlos Mencia was putting on a USO show then. I went to see the show and it was one of the best things I could've done. Even though 2 flights of 2 Apaches flew low overhead, I felt like I was away from here and all the stuff going on. Those performers and celebrities who come out here on USO tours really make a difference. I also got to see the Army/Navy game in the company of some Army folks and one my my Navy brethren. The Army guys were not surprised to see Army get trounced but that didn't soften the blow. 38-3 does not make a football game, it makes a beating.
That's pretty much all that has happened with me. Mostly living day by day doing the same things as the day before. But, I'm getting much closer to my R&R. I have under 40 days to go before I begin traveling home. YAY! Beer and sleep and being home, oh my!
To all who sent packages/letters/etc to me, THANK YOU!!! It's always good to get stuff in the mail, mainly because it's one of the FEW links we have to the world we left.
Until next time...