Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Rookie Move

I have two quick updates for the blog. The first happened on Monday on our trip to NDS. As usual, I was driving the lead HMMV with Dennis as the right seat. We left early morning and arrived to NDS without incident. We didn't do much mentoring as it was the first workday after Eid. Most of the Afghans greeted each other, had hugs and handshakes, then spent the rest of the time drinking chai and discussing Eid.

My rookie mistake happened when we got ready to leave. I started the HMMV and let it warm up while I was putting on my gear. I climbed in the seat, then saw what I thought was white smoke coming up between my legs. Needless to say, I didn't spend alot of time looking at the color or trying to figure out what it was. I thought "FIRE" so I immediately shut off the truck and bailed out the door. I hadn't closed the door yet. I turned around and looked back into the truck and didn't see anymore smoke. What it really was, was my rookie move. I somehow hit the dry chemical fire extinguisher which is under the seat. If you look closely at the picture, you will see the brackets where it belongs. My boots and the floor of the truck turned a nice shade of pink from the chemical. Yes, I received a little teasing from that...

Andrew holding the dry chemical extinguisher
You can see the extinguisher bracket next to the seat
Me, my "Pink" boots and my rookie move...

On Tuesday, I finally flew my Maine State Flag here at NKC. Les helped me raise it and Dennis took the photos. This flag was flown over the state capital in Augusta, then sent to me when I was in Iraq. I flew it in Al Taqqaddam when I was there. Now it has flown in Afghanistan. I have signed certificates for each time it has been raised. They will look good on my wall once I retire.

The Maine Flag under the American Flag, next to the Afghanistan Flag at NKC

All three flags and me
Les and I holding the Maine Flag after we flew it.
So, I have blogged two tales for the past two as a rookie move, and one of me raising and flying the Maine State Flag.

On a better note, we have received official word that December will be our last month in Kabul. Our replacements should be returning from their I stop and beginning the long journey here in the next few days.

Some of us did get up to watch President Obama deliver his speech from West Point about his view of the Afghanistan War and the new troops coming here. It was televised live here at 0530. I am glad he is sending additional troops, but my only question is where are they going to live? Every place I have been here in Kabul already has too many people for the facilities. I can't imagine things are any better elsewhere in the country. I hope someone is thinking this through...