Operation Iraqi Freedom

My Time

Saturday, June 26, 2004

Hey everyone. So guard duty went fine. A lot of those guys speak just enough English to communicate with you and then I'm sure make fun of you behind your back...right in front of your face. But that's ok. It was pretty fun meeting some of the guys. It was kind of scary in the beginning though. Let me run you through how it worked. So first we drive up to the front gate. We pass by some other Iraqis getting searched and go to a huge crowd of them that haven't been searched yet. This is the scary part. Knowing that there are 500 locals standing there in a huge crowd that haven't been searched at all. So, you wait in line behind other soldiers there to get their work crew, and when it's your turn, you get your workers. Now if you have a big project, like ours, then you have a crew of guys that you get everyday. They have a guy in charge of them and about 40 workers. The guy in charge of our workers is an Iraqi that has a Civil Engineering degree from the University of Virginia. Very very intelligent man and makes for a great translator. So then you break them up into smaller groups that can fit in the truck that we brought and their own personal vans that have now been searched and brought on base. Then one soldier rides with each vehicle and you go to the work site. Our workers are working on our new barracks, which is a huge process, but they work all day and leave around 3:30. Most are very friendly. You're not sure which ones are trying to make some money and which ones are plotting a map, but there's no way to tell either, so the best idea is just to be friendly with all of them. After the day is done, you've had a few laughs and wait for your next time for guard. Well, that's it, pretty fun altogether, especially to learn someone else's culture. Nothing else is new, no new attacks that I know of. So pray for quiet peace. God bless you all.

PS: I almost forgot, yesterday marked our 1/3 mark. We are now 33% done. That'll make you feel a little better, I can't wait for the 99.999999999999999% mark. Ok, that's it. Peace.

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