Friday, August 31, 2007


Well folks, I've started turning over with the guy at HQ. I've got big shoes to fill. My replacement doesn't show up until Sunday or Monday....we'll see. So probably another week before I move.

Another week down (that's 16 more Flight Suit Friday's remaining if you are counting) and my buddy up North leaves Iraq tomorrow....I'm so happy and excited for him. Within a week he'll be home with his family, but first he has to go through the Warrior Transition Program in Kuwait. This is where all the Navy guys must go to turn in all that "loaner" Army gear, get some re-socialization and learn how to re-kindle those special relationships and also go through a few screening. Namely Physical and Mental to make sure we are all ok. It's not much fun in Kuwait, like I've said before, because you are waiting for one reason or another to go somewhere else. Like a connecting flight at any US airport.

In my last post was an edited picture of me standing on the roof of the Palace. Great view up can see for miles. I'll post the picture next time.

The pic to the right is of hundreds of T-Walls. They make short ones, tall ones and skinny ones. They are made here in Baghdad and waiting to be shipped all over Iraq. They are concrete barriers used to protect our servicemen from bullets, bombs and mortars. The work very well and we have them everywhere. Some places have taken up to painting them so they are not so much of an eyesore. A few months back, some artists in Baghdad painted many meters of these walls to beautify the city. You can see an article here and here.

That's about all for now. All my love to my supportive family! Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


Alright, I said I'd tell you all about it and here it goes:
As part of my job, I teach some of the new guys about what I do for the Army. The training department has expanded the role of the those of us who teach to mentoring as well. This week I took some of the new guys and showed them what I do through on-the-job-training....or as the Navy calls it OJT. What better way to learn then by doing it. So I had two groups of four people I had to shuttle back and forth on two different days and they got some good hands-on training out of it.

Well, while I was over at the Head Quarters building, I was grabbed by the big boss and his assistant. They told me that I was coming back to Head Quarters to replace a guy that will be leaving shortly. So within a week or so, I will move across the base and move into a trailer and work back at HQ. I will miss working, living & playing with the Army guys I've come to know over the past six months. My replacement will be here shortly and after about 3-4 days of training and turnover, I will get some training and turnover of my own for the job I am about to take.

As part of doing all this training, I've been driving back and forth from my FOB to the other FOB and I've seen a few interesting things crossing the road this week:
1) field mouse
2) mongoose
3) coyote

I didn't know that Iraq had mongoose running wild. At first, I thought it was a ferret, but after asking around, Iraq apparently has these little furry creatures. News to me. Oh yeah, because it's cooling down a bit, the bats have returned....They are flying around everywhere. GO BATS! I like them because they eat the mosquitoes.

Now I have to pack all my stuff and move. I am somewhat bummed about moving all my junk. Oh well, I gotta do what I gotta do.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


Well folks, I just learned that I am changing jobs within the next couple of weeks. This means that my palatial lifestyle has come to an end. I will be moving across the base to a new location and I will be learning and working an entirely new job. I think of it as a promotion of sorts. I have been really busy this week and I haven't had time to post updates. More on this later.

In other news, my eldest daughter tried to stop a field hockey stick with her face and her face lost. Just kidding, she has been trying out for the HS Girls Field Hockey team and she was trying to make a shot and missed...when she ran up to the ball, the goalie hit the ball an accidentally whacked her in the face. She has 6 new "battle" stitches in the same location as the youngest daughter. Now they will look like twins even though they are 3 years apart! She's ok and starting he healing process.

That's all for now....I'll post again real soon.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Another Poster :)

Here's the next poster in the long line of "caveman" posters. Wait until the next one....I'm sure most of you will get a laugh out of it.

It's the weekend here and another flight suit Friday down.

A SUPER BIG shout out to my sister for sending me a huge box of GEEDUNK to include a 4 pound bag of pistachios and a huge box of granola bars. I am a nice guy and I share my stuff....although my life was threatened over the Pistachios. The Army guy was just kidding. He said if I didn't give him any, he'd have to break out his knife and take me out. I told him that I carry four knives and my pistol. (I really do carry four knives: Leatherman, Lock-blade, Swiss-Army pocket knife and a small survival kit knife). Why? Because I can. I do use them all except for the survival one. Anyway, I did share the nuts with him and we had a laugh about it. Alright....Time to hit the hay! Thanks for your support and for seeing what I had to say.

K, J & C, I love you dearly and miss you.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Nut'in but the same-ol stuff

Hello everyone,
Not much to report. Another day closer to going home. Another day of doing what I do to help the Army in the fight against the bad guys.

Unlike conventional warfare, urban warfare is a much more difficult task. In addition to fighting in the streets, our enemy does not wear a uniform, so easily distinguishing the enemy from the population makes the fight more difficult, but we have our ways of telling the difference. Although we take small losses every month, we are either capturing or killing bad guys everyday. We are making a difference and our technology, from up-armored vehicles to better radios, is helping to save lives.

Every military member over here is required to carry a weapon. I'm lucky because I qualified on both the M-16 and the M-9, so I can carry my M-9 sidearm everywhere I go. Some people aren't so lucky because they either didn't qualify or weren't allowed to qualify on the M-9 pistol so they have to carry a bulky M-16 or M-4 rifle EVERYWHERE they go. Chow hall, latrine, gym, etc....I think you get my point. We must be ready to defend ourselves in case the enemy suddenly appears. It'll be strange to get home and not have a pistol on my hip all the time.

For my Auntie-Em, we haven't seen the cat forever and at this point we don't think he is coming back.

Here's an interesting article from CNN.

That's all from Iraq....I still have plenty of coffee. I am currently enjoying either Espresso or Italian Roast....Later!!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Run Away! Run Away!!

Today was much like any other day, but today I was doing laundry. I went down into the laundry room and much to my dismay, the lights were out, so it was very dark. I carry a INOVA LED flashlight on my dog tag chain. I turned it on to see if I could find the light switch. I found a light switch and flicked it on but no luck. As I scanned the area with my little light I spotted a rather LARGE Camel spider at eye level no more than a foot from my face. I was taken aback, but it did not move. The spider was about 3-3.5 inches from pincers to tail. This is the biggest one I've ever seen in real life. The stories about these spiders is enough to scare anyone silly.....most of the myths are urban legend. They apparently aren't spiders, but solpugids. Anyway, I dropped off my laundry and scurried up to my room to grab my camera to capture this Kodak moment. I'm just glad these things aren't living in my room.

Heading into another Flight Suit Friday...Now only 18 more to go. Wooohooo!

Thanks for your support and for stopping by. Love, hugs and kisses to my family.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Zoom, Zoom, Zoom

Another week is zooming by. I've been meaning to take a picture of the crescent moon, but by the time I remember, it's high in the sky. I will try again tomorrow. I found out that I may be switching jobs in September....but I 'll know about the middle of Sept. This week was filled with coordination meetings and taking a buddy to the airport. He was relocating to a different place in Iraq. Things are still going well and I have plenty of coffee. The Wife and Kids are doing well. Both of my daughters started school after I came back off of leave and they are having fun and doing well in school. That's the mid-week report.

K, J & C, I love and miss you!! Thanks for popping in.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Another Saturday!

I would have posted more this week but I've been busy and my Internet has been down. Oh, well. I finally got a picture of the statue Lilith, the first person to bring music to Iraq over 4,000 years ago. The statue is in a small pond/fountain, but it hasn't been used as a fountain in quite a while.

Another Flight Suit Friday down and I should have about 19 more remaining. One of my buddies is heading home shortly and I am very excited for him. You see his Individual Augmentation (IA) was only 6-months long whereas mine is 9-months. I got to take R&R leave while he did not. But all the same, I'd be happy to skip the R&R leave and go home after only 6-months in this place. Normal NAVY deployments are only 6-months and we usually get to visit great places during our journey. Last year on the USS Ronald Reagan we went to Brisbane Australia, Singapore, Dubai United Arab Emrites, Kuala Lumpur Maylasia, Hong Kong and Hawaii. Here we don't get to goto any different places, except Iraq, although the historic culture here is interesting.

I've been here in Iraq now for more than half of my 9-month deployment and I am always learning new things. Just the other day, one of the guys I work with told me about a PX (Army Exchange) that is much closer than the large PX on Camp Liberty. It's located on Camp Striker and it only takes about 10 minutes to get there from my used to take me 30 minutes to get to the Big PX. I couldn't believe he kept it a secret all this time. Not that I visit the PX all that often, but being able to make a quick trip is easier than traveling all the way across the base.

That's about all for now from Iraq. Thanks for stopping by!