Tuesday, September 12, 2006
12 September 2006. Shouz, Afghanistan
This has been truly a busy day, the third busy day in a row. Unfortunately busy days here really mean busy nights. Which entail a certain lack of sleep. Sleeping is overrated anyway when you balance it against security. I work with a group of great guys. We have different call signs for each other to use on the radio, and I will use them here as well, to ensure we keep security. We have Doc, who we sometimes call Holiday, because well, he is a medic. He is a 19 year old young man from Oklahoma who plays guitar very well, has a good sense of humor and is capable of many of the tasks we require around here. We have Boomer from Oklahoma, who is tall and lean and loud, a former marine, who enjoys his baby 240 machine gun, carries about 6 percent body fat, and has intensity to spare. He also is the guy who makes sure to cover my back while I am talking with folks. We have Wings, who is the steady rock from Oklahoma as well, he mans the 50 Cal. These two provide overall security for our group of seven. Gunslinger is a man from Tennessee, he has the most combat experience in our group, as he has had two tours in Iraq. McGiver is the oldest of our group at 50, and he can fix just about anything that has been screwed, welded or bolted together. I am not inventive enough to come up with a good call sign so I just go by Mac, and I am the only guy on this Forward Operating Base from Oregon. That is really immaterial as we have grown together as quite a team. My job here is to get these guys home safely, and to train the Afghanistan National Army company that I work with here. These guys make it possible for myself and McGiver and Gunslinger to train our counterparts. And that of course is a good thing. My counterpart here is a Captain in the Afghanistan National Army. He is one of three very good officers I have worked with here. If he wasn't here this company would be a shambles by now. You kind of have to love the humor involved in some of our names, particularly Boomer and Gunslinger, people reading this in the states may assume there is way to much testosterone around here. And by our standards back in the States that might well be true. Our team however is the team that delivered 140 packets of school supplies to 140 kids in two schools. Everyone here is a husband or a dad, they are all motivated to do the right thing. Ice man is from Georgia, he is a Husband and a dad as well. That pretty much rounds out our crew.