Gym, Chow, Laundry. Repeat x270 days.
Doing well here in Kandahar, but ready to head downrange once they figure out how to get me out to the FOB. For now I am doing all the training classes with the 3rd ESC, which has continued to be very welcoming of me, including answering a billion questions that they probably would rather not have answered. I got about 2 hours last night with the JAG, the G2 (Intel guy) and the IG and talked to them about how each of them processes various complaints, problems or challenges. The IG in particular was interesting, because to me IG was always just some sort of threat you used to try to get your way. Found out all about the IG system, which bothered me somewhat, since it doesn't exactly parallel legal due process requirements that I would have expected. But, I suppose it does protect some folks by shutting down witch-hunts.
Went through MRAP rollover training and IED classes. I can't say much about the latter, except that the Task Force Paladin guys and gals from Raytheon were really excellent. Some of the better classes I've received in the military. Astonishingly, not power point driven, which is ALWAYS a plus when you are trying to stay awake because your internal clock is still about 12 hours off from local time. As for the MRAP rollover thing, I have a video to show you about that, but Youtube and the crappy Kandahar internet have conspired to deprive you of that for now, but I will edit the video and upload when I get home. It should have been fun, but we chose poorly on who should be up in the turret, so I had a 200lbs+ guy fall into my lap as the thing turned upside down. As I was bracing him, my arm was against the roof of the vehicle. The Doc here told me to get my ulna X-ray'd when I get back, which is always fun. (Almost as fun as waiting 5 mins each morning for the MLB website to come up, and finding out my beloved Red Sox lost again.)
Other than that, the 3rd ESC is settling in, and the 4th ESC that they are replacing are trying to get out of here. So, lots of meetings, many of which I attend, and a ton of confusion, which is natural for any change of command like this. But, the "Gym, Chow, Laundry" thing is not just a take on Jersey Shore, it seems to be the main focus. Most of the guys are trying to get into their "Battle Rhythm" which helps deal with all the other stuff. Since I didn't bring any PT clothes I usually surf the net while they are at the gym. (Or gyms, there are at least 2 that I have seen.) The internet here is lethargic to the point of making me hostile a lot, but I can usually get my daily Drudge on while they are out.
Chow Halls....I don't know what made me think that eating breakfast at the Brit chow hall was a good idea, but if you ever find yourself on KAF, I would avoid it. Now, Dinner and Lunch there are pretty good. The guys seem to complain about the food, but I haven't found it that bad. It's Army chow. I eat it, and that's it. Hard to screw up a salad, which is what I get on most days. Other than the Brit chowhall breakfast that featured a bacon that looked and tasted nothing like Bacon, breakfast is where it is at. There's a little dude that makes Omelets that will pretty much make whatever you want. Went to a chowhall yesterday that was way out on the road that circumnavigates the sprawling base that had some pretty good lasagna. But again, I'm really not a culinary expert. It is what it is.
Getting ready to head out to my unit downrange, which I am eager to get to. Transport here though is kind of a nightmare. Hope to check in with y'all shortly from my new home. Will let you know where that is, and who is putting a roof over my head in my next installment. Sorry not much to report, but action should heat up when I get into my new AO.