22 January 2008

Our internet is back.

I am alive.

I'm busy, I'll update later.

13 January 2008


Ok, so our internet died. But as soon as I get it fixed I will be online.

If anyone is interested in talking to me over here, I have AOL instant messanger (www.aim.com - its free to download and use) and my screenname is waryall

I'm ALWAYS online. It's usually from around 10AM EST to around 2 or 3PM but depending on whats going on I may be on earlier or later.

Last few days have just been alot of real quick missions. Nothing major.

Updated wishlist:
Magazines (anything)
Suprisingly - NO MORE Q tips...I underestimated how many would be sent here. I'm probably in the 20,000 range. At least.

11 January 2008

Snow in Iraq?

Yep. According to the news, for the first time in 100 years it snowed in Baghdad today.

But let me tell you something. Snow in Iraq is only cool for about....5 minutes. Then the WHOLE COUNTRY turns to mud. Not cool like watery mud. No..this stuff is like cement. It sticks to everything. And it's like driving on ice. And the heater in my humvee is downright pathetic. So pretty much all day I was freezing to death.

In other news, those of you who watch CBS nightly news saw us yesterday (Thursday). Apparently they did like a huge story on the squadron. I was around the reporters, but never got on camera or anything like that. Just pretty cool that we made the news. I don't know what the story was. Hopefully they told it right. There's been a lot of blood shed for this place. And we've only been here for 2 months.

I just went back and re-read some of my entries. Dr. Burch, if you ever read any of these, I'm sorry, I know there's a lot of comma splices.

07 January 2008

Stupid Missions

So today was pretty relaxed. Around noon or so we had to escort the XO to one of the patrol bases, which meant drive to a base, sit in the truck and wait.

While we were there they called up EOD (our actual mission) cause they found an IED somewhere. So rather than spin up our other section and have them escort EOD out, they tell EOD to standby and wait for us to get back to the FOB.

Now don't get me wrong, I have no problem running missions all day, it makes time go by ALOT faster. But when you have the necessary elements in place to pull a mission, doesn't it make sense to use them, rather than wait for a totally different group to finish a mission and come back and roll right back out.

Somehow though, after about a half hour, the powers that be decided to use our other section (thankfully) so we only had to do the one mission.

After that we got a class on IEDs...dude, these Al Qaida dudes are sneaky little dirtbags. And creative.

Just so you all know I won't be updating for a couple days, I gotta go out and do the hooah thing and kick in doors and all. I'll be safe. I'm coming home. Mom don't worry about me. I'll update when we get back.

06 January 2008

Long Days, Longer Nights

The last few days have been rediculous.

We've been pulling missions all day and all night. Literally. We squeeze in a couple hours sleep and then roll right back out again.

But I saw some seriously awesome displays of American firepower. Like, really awesome.

There is nothing cooler than watching two Bradleys engaging a house, which then explodes, and then followed up by an airstrike. Oh yeah.

I'm sure I'll have another mission tonight. Lately we've become everyone's favorite when it comes to escort. I think we've run like 8 or 9 missions to the same place. Doesn't sound like much, except the shortest one was something around 4 hours.

Whatever. Three weeks til leave.

04 January 2008

War is Hell

According to the Associated Press:

"The latest deaths reported by the military:

-A soldier was killed Wednesday by an explosive south of Baghdad."

Iraq isn't fun anymore.

02 January 2008


This morning we were supposed to wake up at like 5 something so we could do PT. The whole PT thing in Iraq kinda erks me. I mean, we run missions all day long and then most nights, but for some reason we still have to go to the gym. Whatever.

So the guy who does wake ups for everyone shows up at our room at 8 to wake us up (jackpot!). So we went out to the trucks, did the whole morning routine, then we chilled in our rooms for a little while. Right about lunch time (as usual) we got a mission call. I seriously think that Al Qaida has like a hunger meter or something. Cause EVERY time we get called out for EOD its at meal time. It's super frustrating.

So we all rolled down South to blow up an IED. The area where we were is pretty secure, so we all turned into the stereotypical tourist and busted out the cameras. I think I took like a hundred pictures today. Of nothing. And as usual, I left my camera on the truck. So you're all out of luck until I get the motivation to go out to "Stephanie" as my gunner has so affectionately named our truck. I disagreed, I wanted something awesome like "Super Killer" or "Mega Destroyer"

And now I have another mission


All I want to do right now is sit on the front porch of the Kilgore house with Cali and Rae and Ellis and True and Richie and everyone else who "lives" there. I wanna tell my stories, just like True likes them - rediculous.

I should probably explain that. I love to tell stories. If there was a way I could get paid to travel around and just tell stories to people, I'd do it. The best part about my story telling (depending on who you talk to) is that I get really excited about the story I'm telling. I start like yelling and moving around all over the place and acting stuff out. It's truly something to watch. And when I'm home that's all we do. Sit on the front porch for story time...and I'll go into a twenty minute story about a fight at a show and how this guy punched this guy, and then all of a sudden there's a stupid girl in the fight (she got hit, and yes she deserved it) and blah blah blah.

I also have a lot of very serious stories that I tell. Like the little boy that got killed on SR 44 in New Smyrna Beach.

Stories are how I cope with stuff. And I like to let other people know what happened or what I saw. I guess that's one reason I started this blog. I know that my family wanted a way to keep up with what I was doing over here..but it was more for me than it was for them. Because I know by the time I get home I'll have so many stories, I couldn't remember them all. So I'm saving them here. I'm letting the world hear my stories. I just wish that I could type the way I talk. My stories are thoroughly more enjoyable in person.

I also wish that the Army didn't censor us. I want to be able to explain what it's like to see your buddy wounded, or to shoot at someone, but they won't let us. Somehow it gives away operational security. Whatever.

As far as the questions posted on my comments:

The metal thing on the front of my truck. We call it a Rhino. I can't explain how it works (OPSEC) but it's used to defeat IEDs. Problem is, like most things we have, it only works about the half the time, because the really sneaky bad guys figured out how to work around it. I'm living proof. But it does work, so don't get mad at the Army or nothing.

Iraq's impact on my faith. Well, missing death by about 8 inches really gets you thinking. Alot. I have spent alot of time thinking and trying to figure out exactly what it is God is wanting me to do with my life. Iraq has taught me not how to listen to God, but how to hear him. And I've heard alot. I'm very different than I was before I left. I'm much more of a peaceful person now. When I left I was very confrontational (as hard as that may be to believe). I enjoyed things like, getting in fights, mosh pits, what have you. That's one reason I joined the Army - to come to Iraq and kill people. But I realized real quick I was an idiot. A broken nose is one thing. Missing a leg, or an eye, or not breathing...that's a little bit worse. I realized the stupidity involved in the stuff I was doing before I left (Cali got me under control, but Iraq really got it) and now I'm very much disinterested in anything "action oriented." I would rather spend the rest of my days showing kids in Thailand or Africa what it's like to be loved.

Looking into the eyes of Iraqis - that's really a hard question to answer. Every neighborhood is completely different than the other. Some neighborhoods, they're truly happy people who appreciate us and what we're doing. Other neighborhoods, you just know that something bad is going to happen. Cause noone will look at you. Or they all do the tough guy thing and stare you down. I don't really know. For the most part though, I'd say that most Iraqis I've met seem to love us. I know the little ones do. I know there is at least one guy who hates hates hates us. We might have accidentally caused a little car accident...in which a dude on a bike got tagged by a pickup truck. Woops. My bad.

Blythe - One of the guys I work with went to high school with you. Barker is his last name. He's a pretty cool guy. Small world huh?

01 January 2008


Wow. Today was awesome (read that with as much sarcasm as you could muster).

Today all started yesterday. We woke up at some stupid hour, I don't even remember to clean the trucks. In Iraq. We spent a couple hours sweeping dust out of our truck, and taking out all the gear and everything to re-organize it all. Doesn't sound like much...but let's look at what's in my truck:

2 radios
A computer
A Browning M2 .50cal Machine Gun
Several cases of .50 cal ammo
The gear for me, my gunner and TC (3 IBAs, ammo, helmets, NODs, flashlights, gloves, snivel gear etc)
A couple first aid kits
A stretcher
A roll of concertina wire
Rocket Launcher (oh yeah!)
Slave Cables
And about a million more things.

So anyway about 30 seconds after we finish putting everything away we get called on a mission. We had to take the Maintenance Chief out to recon a route for something or other. And the chief and a mechanic both rode in my truck. This is good because they get to see how we use our trucks and how they break and what we do with all the cool stuff the put on our trucks (like our PA an police siren). Well while we were out, they noticed that the steering was not as easy as it should be and the chief told me to take it to the motor pool today. Oh why? I hate the motor pool.

So this morning we ran a couple EOD missions. We actually blew up a real weapons cache (take that Al Qaida!).

Then I came back and went to the motor pool. And spent like 12 hours replacing the suspension on my humvee.

But then I came to my room and there was a postcard from Thailand:

"Hey babe!
I just wanted to send this postcard to you...btw I climbed up to the top of the temple on the front of this. Anyways, I hope you are doing good. I miss you so much babe. I can't wait to see you! Don't forget to by me some sweet stuff! I love you so much! I miss you like crazy.
Love your Carlisle"

And I guess...my day wasn't that bad after all.