Author Topic: I just wanted to share this:  (Read 273 times)

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Offline Ford289HiPo

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I just wanted to share this:
« on: December 28, 2013, 09:01:54 PM »
I recently took a short (very short) contract that took me back to Afghanistan. for me, it's been 10 years since I first set foot on Bagram Air Base and established a clinic.

This time, I was assigned to a FOB (forward operating base) in Kunar Province. As FOB's go, it was nice. We had trees, aromatic eucalyptus, orange, pomelo, and grapefruit; and we had grass. The kind where you could take off your shoes and socks and curl our toes in!
 The air was so clear, albeit dry, that you could literally see for miles:



The place was an old Russian base. I think the caretaker was an old muj form that time. He did a good job maintaining the place which made it a lot more liveable that a dusty hole-in-the-wall.
Amazingly, the US military hasn't cut everything down, like they seemed to have done at so many other bases.



The locals ranged from filthy rich to dirt poor. The filthy rich Afghani's were landholders, politicians, or smuggled lumber or minerals. The area is rich in lapu lazuli and sapphire. No warlords now (yet). They'll return after we leave.
The poor ones....well, they are poor in that part of the world.


The one on the right was my 'terp, not a local.

The kids were happy to get blankets, socks, and other excess sundries from us before we departed the area. The guards at the gate were really happy to see us donate some goods and build relations with the locals. It seemed to work for all.

And Bagram......................GADZ!
I was able to visit my old clinic, caress my old b'ambulance,but that was about it. Shipping clothing home, traveling on  a real slow bus from one side of the base to the other, and putting up with a bottom-of-the-bucket employer took most of the 16 days I was stuck there.
 Oh yeah, I woke up around 0230 one morning to hear an explosion nearby......about 5 minutes later, the "Voice-From-The-Sky" announced "Incoming", Incoming".
Nothing like being a bit late..........

That was probably it for me. I had a lot of trouble getting over there, the job just wasn't worth it, and contracting is way too competitive today. Not to mention the age factor........but we won't go there.
I need to thank @Allegra for listening to, and putting up with my pre-deployment b*tching. It seems the military is now willing to cut the throat of it's own vets when it comes to us providing the skillsets to support them.
« Last Edit: December 28, 2013, 09:02:44 PM by Ford289HiPo »
I wonder when the lies will stop and truth begin, even as grim as the truth may be. And then I remember that for 70 years, the reign of terror in Russia called itself "the people's government." We have so far to fall, yet we are falling fast and Hell yawns to receive us.

Offline Rapunzel

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Re: I just wanted to share this:
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2013, 09:06:15 PM »
Thanks for sharing, Ford -- and the pictures.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline Ford289HiPo

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Re: I just wanted to share this:
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2013, 09:15:18 PM »
No problem, Rap. I just wanted to get it off of my chest. For me, it's part of the closure.

Now, I just wonder what an old soldier is to do with himself(outside of drive the Mrs and GOPBR's crazy :nometalk:).
I wonder when the lies will stop and truth begin, even as grim as the truth may be. And then I remember that for 70 years, the reign of terror in Russia called itself "the people's government." We have so far to fall, yet we are falling fast and Hell yawns to receive us.

Offline Rapunzel

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Re: I just wanted to share this:
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2013, 09:16:16 PM »
No problem, Rap. I just wanted to get it off of my chest. For me, it's part of the closure.

Now, I just wonder what an old soldier is to do with himself(outside of drive the Mrs and GOPBR's crazy :nometalk:).

I have no doubt you will stay busy.  Glad you are back safe and sound.
“The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves.” G Washington July 2, 1776

Offline EC

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Re: I just wanted to share this:
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2013, 09:26:20 PM »
Good to have you back!

Looks like you got lucky with your FOB. Pretty place - then again a lot of it is.

As to what you'll do? Whatever you decide is needed. As always.  :laugh:
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Online Oceander

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Re: I just wanted to share this:
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2013, 10:12:38 PM »
Welcome back!


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