My two-weeks of R&R ended at 1300 (EST) on the 28th but I am not yet at Speicher. If Iraq is hell than Kuwait is purgatory. I am in Kuwait waiting for a flight to Speicher. More specifically, I am at a small Army airfield living in a tent using the dwindling supplies in my very compact carry-on bag. I bought a towel and shower shoes today so I could get cleaned up a little. The temperature easily got to 110 so, needless to say, I got a little sweaty.
My time back in the States was wonderful. I took a three night carribean cruise with my girlfriend, Pam, as soon as I arrived. I spent the rest of the two weeks in Chattanooga dividing my time as best I could between friends and family. I indulged in such luxuries as indoor plumbing, civilian clothes, fresh cooked meals, a wonderfully comfortable bed, and the company of the people I love. I didn't realize quite how much I missed these otherwise routine pleasures until I had them back. Their absence is hitting me hard here in Kuwait. I will, of course, get used to their absence once again.
I expect to be back at Speicher tomorrow. I will probably be given a few days to get over the jet lag and then get thrown back into the mix. I am due for my annual flight evaluation this month (because June is my birth month). I guess I will have to take some time away from working out and sun bathing to do some studying. Oh the sacrifices of being a pilot! Returning to the war is a little bit easier knowing that we are definately on the downhill part of the deployment. No dates are ever certain but, assuming we stay a year, I will be done with this deployment before Sepetember ends. That is less than four months remaining. Yeah!
I hope that you are all enjoying the start of your summer and had a chance to grill some steaks (or vegetables) on Memorial day. I hope also that my presence here and these updates perhaps reminds some of you of the real significance of the holiday. I know that I never really gave it a lot of thought until I began this journey with the Army. Now that I have seen some of the losses first hand, Memorial day means a lot more than it used to.
Ill get off of my soapbox now. Thank you all for staying in touch, enjoy your summer, and take care.