Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Easter is Here and Gone

29 March 2005

I realize that it’s been some time since my last update. I’ve been negotiating a new contract and thinking about coming back to Camp Victory in some type of metamorphosis of sorts. Checking into a better job at a better salary staying with the same company. Just waiting to see about whether the break between contracts that I’ve requested is approved. My sister kind of read my mind. She mentioned that I must be in deep thought about something because I have been unusually quiet… no or fewer emails, fewer calls, etc. Nothing carved in stone yet. I could just as easily come home too. I’m being kind of non-committal at this point. I do miss home more than I’ve admitted to.

I must say that I was horrified the other morning (Good Friday Morning, mind you) when I went into the bathroom trailer to find that the walls had been scowered clean of all graffiti. I say horrified because someone had only last week written on one of the stall walls that this wall belongs up on e-Bay. What a serious loss of collected thoughts from the men and women (well maybe not so many women in the men’s facilities) to include short calendars (countdown calendars counting down the days till one departs), derogatory remarks between competing units, expressions and frustrations of life here. At times, I will admit is gets a bit filthy, but the underlying theme here is that all throughout the existence of mankind, graffiti has always existed in some form and has always represented an outlet for expression of thought and feelings.

Besides, where else can you find so many comical misspellings of words in addition to their poor attempts at correcting said misspellings and such. (i.e. An arrow pointing down into the porta pottie with the words above, “2004 Ballet Box”. The subsequent drawing of a ballerina below with the corrected spelling of “Balot” and finally the correct spelling of Ballot. Come on folks, you have to find some humor in that!)

Today, one of my days off, I was in the PX and ran into one of the Antion guys that we work with every so often. Standing in front of the magazine rack, he and I couldn’t help but notice that we have really been missing all the reports and sitings of those extraterrestrial encounters that you all seem to have back home in the States. Blazed across the National Enquirer (or some similar upstanding literary classical newspaper) headlines is “Farmer Shoots Two-Headed Alien in Front Yard.” I’m sure that the farmer would have had additional shots of the “Bat Boy” circling around overhead after the shooting if his digital camera batteries wouldn’t have run low! But wait, there’s more. Further down the front page we are informed that a “Cannibal Opens Fast Food Restaurant!” Well, duh! We all knew that Wendy’s is now serving “Ladyfinger Sandwiches” with Chili.

Hot news here at Camp Victory. Liberty (formerly Victory North) is getting a Popeye’s Chicken Trailer right next to the Burger King! Whoo-hoo, we’re really getting uptown boys! On Victory South, we now have a Pizza Hut trailer, a Subway trailer and just this last week, a Green Beans Coffee trailer. Where the heck is Jeraldo to report on all this? This place is actually becoming civilized. Imagine, coffee and sidewalks! OMG, They have yuppified Camp Victory.

They have also opened up a dry cleaning place, so I could actually have starched shirts if I really missed the smell of starch in my shirts and feel of starch in my shorts…so to speak, of course. Not to mention a Hair Salon too. Tiffany went over there last week to get a few new little accents in her beautiful, thick auburn, shoulder-length hair. When they took the foil off, it was a bit more streaked than she anticipated and now she’s blonde! I guess they didn’t tell her it was an off-campus trailer of the Baghdad Beauty School. I thought it looked nice, but she is still trying to deal with being a blonde. Maybe I need to send her that collection of blonde jokes Michael sent me so that she is aware of what people’s new expectations are of her as an up-and-coming-blonde.

Well, time for dinner. I will leave you with one little tidbit of “Serious Sh**house Rhetoric” that I did manage to save in my notebook back from 27 Dec 2004. While I don’t necessarily agree with the opinions expressed, I was personally struck by the passion of the author’s thoughts and words.

To all my Brothers in Arms:

Upon your return home,
Carefully evaluate our government.
Our elected officials have sat idle
On 6 figure salaries,
While badass soldiers by the thousands
Complained of strange illnesses.
Our gov (government) denied their claim.
Ask yourself: Is my VA hospital
That which is fit for the .5% of our
Population whom can truly call
Themselves warriors?
Our army is *slowly* trying to change
For the better.
God bless soldiers who speak out
On the bullsh**!
In our lifetime, U.S.A. will go through
Another revolution (peacefully, “Hopefully”),
Hope to see you there!

Never fail to hold your leadership to account.
Dave ~ I was so happy to see that you are doing your blog again. I know .... I am a bit slow...but hey...at least I am here!! Rather you decide to stay or come home I am behind you 100% and admire what you have and will do over there. Please know that you are in our thoughts and prayers!!

Hi! I've started reading your blog ever since my husband started working for ITT and he too is stationed there in Camp Victory South. You two probably have crossed paths but don't even know it. Anyway, the reason for this letter (you don't have an email address I could send this to, so I just used the comment section of your blog!)is to ask a favor. Our whole family just came back from vacation. My kids and I met my husband (Ted Douglas)in the Philippines. My kids and I are back in the States now. Ted on the other hand, from the last time I heard from him which was Sunday, was stranded in Kuwait because his flight was cancelled. It's Wednesday now and I still have no word from him. I was wondering, is there a number I could contact to check if he got into Iraq safely? Or do you have friends that can check flight manifests? Hope you can help. Thanks!

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