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Thread: Make No Plans for me...

  1. #16
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Deep in the Hundred Acre Woods
    Posts
    549
    Another update from Mesopotamia...

    I recently returned from a short "vacation" to the U.S., and my return to Iraq was met with stifling heat. One thing that becomes noticable here - the lack of rain. Back in the U.S. it had rained off and on for several days, and I even found myself standing out in it a bit longer than normal just to experience it again.

    Here, it doesn't seem to exist. When outside, one can quickly imagine that they're thrust into an oven. Only those who live in Arizona or New Mexico (or Death Valley, CA!) may understand this heat.

    I heard Solar Minimum should arrive back home shortly. I won't open the package until I'm back there in the late fall. I look forward to that time.

    Memorial Day - I find that the U.S. seems to have forgotten what it is. It was intended to honor those who died in war. As I told my mom, I hope she never celebrates/honors me on Memorial Day, as I intend to live. Veteran's Day was made to celebrate those who have deployed to war, and Armed Forces Day is an international day to recognize each country's military members whether they have deployed or not. I don't think we really "honor" the dead much anymore on Memorial Day, or perhaps I'm too cynical, but it seems the holiday has drifted from its original intent. There were even schools in the U.S. that held class on Memorial Day, to make up for snow days.

    Flowers - there's a few patches of them that I'm maintaining here, mostly desert flowers, xeriscape type. Even the ones intended for this climate are struggling unless I water them daily. I now see why irrigation was an essential here.

    I'm trying to sprout some olive trees, and they're a bit tricky, but I'm hoping it works. Even if I do grow a branch, there's no peace from a tree I'm afraid. Symbolic, yes, but a mortar round still explodes when it hits an olive tree. We haven't had any rockets or mortars impact near where I live (yet), which is a good thing.

    June is the month of the highest probability of the intense dust storms, the ones so thick they turn day to darkness -- should get interesting.
    BM
    I've been lurking...

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    ft.lauderdale fla.
    Posts
    291
    BM
    There are us who on Memorial Day do still take it very seriously,I know myself for one and no matter what on these "SPECIAL DAYS" Me and my father actually are able to be in the same room with each other!My father was Vietnam my 6 brothers are still in "THE CORE!" So me and my father take this time very serious considering now he has grandchildren right there with YOU!!!So on this like I say on my way those sand storms can be very "TRICKY SO BE EXTRA CAREFUL PLEASE!!!!!.BTW PLEASE PM ME YOUR ADDRESS.On my sends I would love very much to add you to my list PLEASE!What is your APO.Thanks Rhonda
    My sentimental friend we`ll walk as one again,one day.M.Ure

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    buffalo, new york
    Posts
    1,437
    yes beached male please take care out there we too take memorial day seriously also as bill's nephew is in iraq right now also and his dad was a a vietnam veteran also my nephew charlie is a mp and just put in to go to japan for 2 years also . thank you again for all you do for our country!!! be safe dee
    music junkie!!

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    ft.lauderdale fla.
    Posts
    291
    Hey Dee any chance that is OKINAWA Camp BUTLER.
    Last edited by chinapavon; 05-30-2009 at 12:19 AM.
    My sentimental friend we`ll walk as one again,one day.M.Ure

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    A sort of place you don't often find. A quiet room to go out of your mind.
    Posts
    461

    Hello again Beached Male

    Beached Male-

    I will keep it simple- I so enjoy reading your posts.

    I sincerely hope you will keep us updated on everything and anything from your soldier's perspective- from the climate to your work. I know I speak for most of us- we want to know what you're thinking, what you're doing. Thank you. CP

    I don't know what I just said or why.

    From my heart & from my hand
    why don't people understand my intention
    -Weird Science




  6. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    buffalo, new york
    Posts
    1,437
    i am not sure rhonda might be all i know is they asked him to go there i will find out from my sister in law and let you know! dee
    music junkie!!

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Liverpool, New York, USA
    Posts
    1,650
    Thanks for posting about growing flowers and trees in your daily life - that's something we certainly don't hear about on the news (and it's a damn shame). It's going to sound weird, but Iraq seems like a beautifully stark place when you describe it, showing us there's beauty everywhere (or could be), and I thank you for your positive view. Maybe someday things'll change to the point I can see it for myself. Hey, you have to dream, or how do they come true?
    Maybe on course to the best yet!

  8. #23
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Deep in the Hundred Acre Woods
    Posts
    549
    Although it's just past midnight here, for most of you it is still August 3rd, 2009. Significant event for me here yesterday on August 2nd - an Olive tree finally sprouted for me. Now this was not easy, I must say. I had five seeds of the type Olea europaea (European Olive) and they are finicky - they require some time in the refrigerator before sowing at room temperature, so from January through March they sat in the fridge in soil in a sealed microwave container, one that you would put leftover food within. Then in March I replanted all five of the seeds in a more appropriate pot and added some new soil. The instructions I received stated that it could take a couple months to sprout once at room temperature, but after nearly 5 months I almost gave up on them. I had thought of stopping to water the pot those seeds sat in.

    I relearned one of life's lessons today, however. Don't give up on something just because it doesn't fall within the "expectations" you set for it or that others say it must take in terms of time. There is value in Persistence. Even though this may be the only one of five that will sprout in total, this one was worth the wait.

    There's another interesting aspect to yesterday's sprouting. On the same day, it was announced that Captain Speicher's remains were positively identified from a crash site here in Iraq. He had been missing for 18+ years but at least this brings closure to his family. I am at the base named after him, COB Speicher, and it brought relief to many of us that his fate is known and certainly doesn't support the conspiracy theory many were pushing over the years.

    We are also preparing to return home and the tree symbolizing Peace is a refreshing thing to see as we begin to focus toward our departure. There's no universal truth being sent through this one sprout, but it made my day a bit brighter. I look forward to handing off all these plants of mine, both inside and outside in my little garden, to the next group who comes in here and I'm hopeful that they appreciate what I have started for them.

    In other news, I'm finally gearing up mentally to reconnect with my family. Don't get me wrong, I love my wife and kids, but I don't mention them much here at the board or online simply because it is easier for me during these long separations to keep my mind a bit separated and not deliberate about it online. This is my third year in total to be separated from my family, and no one year has been any easier than the other. The challenges just differ because of our situation and ages of our children and their maturity level. Over time, my income improves so financially things are easier, but as the kids age they need more emotional and spiritual support from me and that workload increases with time. It's very true that the physical workload of raising your children is replaced with an emotional and mental workload in trade.

    I also found out that my father-in-law lost his job as a police officer. I believe it was partly related to our economic situation along with his age and health playing into the decision. I see more of that in America and know that we have a tough road ahead of us, our families will need to come closer in total and much of the independence we Americans thrive on may need to be tempered with the reality of our situation. Has anyone else been thinking about moving back to their hometown? Maybe it's just because I've been away from the U.S. so long that those feelings hit, but I think hometowns across America could use a boost. Maybe New York City, L.A., D.C. and others should see emigration back out to home towns and we begin to circle the wagons a bit.

    Just some rambling thoughts on another day in the life in Iraq.
    BM
    I've been lurking...

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Also on Facebook
    Posts
    1,345

    Smile Celebrate!

    Beached Male I was happy to read all the wonderful news. I am thrilled for you! You know you have so much too look forward to with the reconnection to family and life back home. Enjoy every minute with the wife and children. I remember a saying and I think it is "Children hold your hands when they are young, but they hold your hearts forever." Not sure if I recited it exact but that is the gist of it.
    My own thoughts on moving back to hometowns/origins - well for me I was born and raised a "Jersey Girl" and I love my location as I am conveniently located to so many things. Supposedly my township was rated the 75th best places to live in the U.S. in which something I was pleased to hear. I wonder what/where the others are?
    Sadly though the reality is that when it is time for retirement, I can no longer afford to live here. Taxes and insurances are so costly! I hope things will change for the best but look at the politicians here in Jersey very corrupt! If financially things get any worse before we are able to "flee" then we have been making jokes amongst our family that we will all sell our homes and buy one large home and live in a commune. Only drawback with that is I already know that certain family members would not pull their share of any work and then we'd be feuding. Then there is my husband who is happy being quiet and likes his privacy. Hmm I wonder what other solutions can be brought about? If it weren't for the rain, I know how to make a beautiful home out of a refrigerator box. I always joked about that before I got married because I never thought I'd ever be a homeowner. But here I am two homes later. Hardwork does pay off but that is only possible when employed which looks like chance are slim these days. Another hmmmmm????
    Not much savings in the bank and finding we live paycheck to paycheck on only one income for a family of four - YIKES!!!!!
    Couldn't we go back to the days of bartering?
    Last week I needed to purchase a dress for an upcoming wedding. I actually begged for a discount. Fortunately I had a male manager so I batted my eyes and instead of 10 percent, he offered 15% and then I begged a bit more and he managed to give another 5 %. At least I know how to use my womanly instincts to get what I need !
    Last edited by rockerchic; 08-03-2009 at 06:01 PM.

  10. #25
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Liverpool, New York, USA
    Posts
    1,650
    I hope your transition goes well, and that someone takes good care of your tree. Hopefully, it'll be enough of an inspiration that they'll give it the attention it deserves!

    I don't have to worry about moving back home...I never left (for long). Admittedly, this can be a kinda un-happening place, and the winter weather is a challenge, but I have quick access to a lot of unspoiled areas, which is where I really love to spend my time. The raft of pics of random plants I have on the social networks tell the tale! I thought for a long time that I should go somewhere else, but never found the place where I said "this is it", and didn't want to leave my family. When I heard Cy's It Finds You, I realized I never found "the place" because I was there already. Sure, there are times I want something more, or different, but that's what travel is for (and keeps it exciting), and what Internet shopping is for

    Now if I was forced to move, I'd probably come to love things about the new locale, and would get "home"sick upon leaving THAT place. But I may never find out, and that's okay, too.
    Maybe on course to the best yet!

  11. #26
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Deep in the Hundred Acre Woods
    Posts
    549

    Back in the U.S.

    I made it back to the U.S.
    Admittedly, I haven't had much time to check this site or much else on the net in some time now. It's good to be back, and thanks to anyone out there who said a prayer or sent notes, letters and/or packages to me.

    Two things I notice right away about life in the northeast U.S. -- the air has a much heavier (and fragrant) quality to it. The contrast of the color green - majority hues in green vice tan/brown is a welcome change.
    BM
    I've been lurking...

  12. #27
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Camberley, Surrey, UK
    Posts
    1,018

    Re: Back in the U.S.

    Originally posted by Beached Male
    I made it back to the U.S.
    Admittedly, I haven't had much time to check this site or much else on the net in some time now. It's good to be back, and thanks to anyone out there who said a prayer or sent notes, letters and/or packages to me.

    Two things I notice right away about life in the northeast U.S. -- the air has a much heavier (and fragrant) quality to it. The contrast of the color green - majority hues in green vice tan/brown is a welcome change.
    BM
    Welcome back!
    From the point of ignition
    to the final drive
    the point of the journey
    is not to arrive
    anything can happen

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Las Vegas ...all 54 years of the life so far
    Posts
    279
    Welcome Home ...Thank you for your service .
    God bless you , always & all-ways .
    gregory

  14. #29
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Temecula,Ca
    Posts
    584
    Welcome home, glad you made it back safe and sound!


    Alicia

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