Friday, August 18, 2006

Say Cheese...Now Give it Back

Its was almost seven months into our deployment and we were all ready to go home. Some people were thinking about extending with the new unit coming in or coming back and working for KBR (Kellogg, Brown and Root). The civilians that work for KBR make so much money its fucking insane. They do the same shit we did and make 100,000 plus a year. Such bullshit. I started to have 2 to 3 stories in the newspaper a week. I would cover the Air Force firefighters a lot. They always did cool training and were just laid back. One time they taught me how to repel and I repelled down the side of the stadium while all the other suckers were stuck at their desk job. The General on post got so sick of seeing firefighter stories he told my OIC (Office in Charge) to stop having me cover them and asked if one was my boyfriend.
I volunteered to cover a story in a near by village. People from back home sent over a bunch of soccer balls, jerseys, and shoes, so we were going to hand them out at some school. We left the East ECP (entrance control point) and there was a village right outside the gate …the village was known for allowing insurgents to reside there and being really poor. We went onto the main road and there were KBR trucks flying towards us (they don’t carry weapons and this convoy did not have security). We pulled over and waited for their convoy to pass us. The one thing the Army drilled into our heads before arriving in Iraq was NEVER stay stationary…never. Sure enough, we stayed in the same spot for at least 15 minutes and the humvees were about 15 meters apart. We should’ve just written “attack us” on the humvees. There was a Major in my vehicle and he said…”We are probably going to get attacked, so keep your guard up, scan your sector and be ready.” Thanks for the tips. Thankfully we didn’t get attacked by anything but kids. We finally got to the school and guess what… the school was closed. The Army is known for their piss poor planning. Luckily there were a few teachers and a couple other people at the school, they rounded up a bunch of kids from the village. We had them throw on the jerseys and kick around the soccer ball for a while. Then when we were done taking pictures we took the shit back and sent them on their way. (We gave the items to the school so their kids could use it). We also gave out shoes and clothes. One father was there with his son and daughter. The whole time he was trying to convince me that his son was American because he had blonde hair and blue eyes. He wanted me to take him back with me. Every now and then, you’ll see kids that look American. It’s really weird. His son and I walked around holding hands…his sister was really scared but she finally warmed up to me. I found some sneakers for them and went to go get them in back of the school. I walked back there by myself and got screamed at by an Officer. He was like, “What are you doing? You don’t go anywhere by yourself. You could get kidnapped or shot.“ He had a point. It was a nice mission. One of my favorite Officers came with us…Captain S. She ruled. She was a Sci-Fi nerd. We would talk about Buddha, share books, make fun of our higher up OIC, talk about our families. She was a sweetheart…just a genuine good person.


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