I’ve been here before. In 2012. Afghanistan has a funny way of laying tricks on you. When you look at the landscapes from afar, they’re beautiful. The Hindu Kush Mountains, which are at the souther tip of the Himalaya’s, are incredible to look. However, it seems that wherever you travel, you’re surrounded with this dirt that resembles a static like moon dust. It floats and dances in the air and sticks to your clothes. Our role and the activity has died down significantly since then. You can definitely tell that our role has transitioned from “full spectrum operations” to “let’s start getting the fuck outta here”. While the tempo has declined, the atmosphere is real, make no mistake. A Soldier was killed a few days ago with an interpreter by an insurgent posing as a local national who was employed on the base. The mortar rounds and rockets still get lobbed and launched over the walls. While not as volatile as my last trip, they are still threats. My room is situated in a good spot. I am close to the shops, close to the gym, close to the chow hall and close to work. And every morning I walk out my front door and take a big, deep breath of the fresh Afghanistan air. NOTHING is more refreshing than engulfing the smell of diesel fuel and smoke from the nearby burn pit. In regards to continuation of these posts; I know people are interested in this experience for many reasons and I love being the arbiter of that experience. In my entries, I will do my best to portray a comedic approach for a couple reasons;
1) From the Soldier’s perspective, humor is the remedy to many of our issues. It’s a sentiment of relief.
2) Comedy often reminds us that things aren’t quite as bad as they seem and resonate positivity over negative outlooks. The last thing I want to do is paint a picture to those whom support us at home of misery, despair and squalor.