Friday, April 29, 2005

Sand Storm in Tulil, Iraq Posted by Hello

Sand Strom in Tulil, Iraq. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

C2 is not enjoying himself in Iraq...

Barry, How full is your mail box? I'm trying to send you a 4 MB file and it bounces back. Might you know why?

So I met xxxxx and a few other guys the other day and long story short the other guys don't like me because I'm not attractive. It's not like I was going to fuck them or vice versa (neither were the cat's meow, or the dog's Grrr) but it would have been nice to just know a few guys here. I was having a good day until I got that email and now I'm bummed, just bummed.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

I'm off to Louisiana for a few days. I get to meet Tommy Boy. Kewl.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

The melencoly joy of power washing.

Today I bought a power washer-- 3000 PSI. It blasts the dirt off of anything. My cemet walks look new. My roof is clean. My old wooden benches look band new.

The washer comes with a "red" washer tip that can blast pieces off of cement and stone.

It's like cleaning with a tornado-- 3000 dirt blasting psi at the end of the hose. All that high pressure water has to go somplace. If you spray near soil or beauty bark then a blast of crap flies all over the place. You need to clean twice. Once at high pressure to chisel the dirt off and once at low pressure to clean the mess left by the first pass.

The other downside is that it does a good job, but slowly. It only cleans a strip about four inches wide so it takes a long time to do a sidewalk or roof. I tried it on a small patch of a bench. The wood went from weathered and grey to brown and new. The difference was so noticeable I had to do the whole bench and the wood chair next to it.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Last night RO and I went to downtown Renton. Steven was going to join us, but he got delayed returning from work.

We had dinner at the Melrose and dessert at Jubilant.

Downtown Renton is a weird mix. It's a city core rebounding from rock bottom. There are a lot of old crappy buildings. Many are now being restored and some great restaurnts are going moving in.

It's weird to walk around crumbling ghost city but then stumble on a packed little bistro.

Steven is at his wits end with his brother. In the last 6 months Steven has given his bro about $20,000 to get him back on his feet. It's not working. Steven is ready to cut the cord and let his brother fend for himself. The decision would be easier if his brother didn't have a son. Steven doesn't want to hurt the son. At the same time Steven's brother needs a very hard kick in the pants.

C2 writing from Iraq...

How are you doing? I very much appreciate your email but you must be saying 'Dang, it's like he emails Every Day!!' Well, I may have some extra time on my hands. The two people that work for me 'dont like me' because I ask too many questions like "what are you doing?" One guy was supposed to be working on an Access project for several days and when I asked to see what he's done, he got all pissy and deleted his work then stormed off. Later he pretty much said he doesn't have anything to so and then left on his R&R for 3 weeks (but first he told me he didn't like me.) Such is life..

Anyway, God Bless them Italians and GirlScouts. The Italians run a pizzaria here on Base that has internet access FREE from all the web Nazi sex filters that Halliburton and the Iraqis put in place. This means I again get to see pics of hot neked guys!! And the GirlScouts sent boxes of their cookies over here for the poor soldiers and I guess I qualify as they sent alot and give out boxes and boxes to everyone here! Cookies and porn, it just keeps getting better and better! If I didn't read the papers I wouldn't even know there's a war going on!

I even got a very good message from the ... ops guy at Baghdad HQ about my plan/proposal for data management here. They are really backward here (as far as efficient data management) and my proposal made me sound like I knew what I was talking about. I see my next job....

Anyway, I should get back to work making people hate me (buy just asking them to do their jobs.)

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

I've been working a lot. I don't really enjoy it when this happenes.

C2 writing from Iraq...

I suppose having to go to lunch in a flak jacket really says something about ones environment. I have to admit that there have been a couple of times (even on the convoy ride here) that made me think twice. I was talking to my boss the other day about camel spiders and he mentioned a story about a Major here having a spider fall from the tent ceiling and bite him. I didn't have a nightmare but I did think about it and that evening examined my tent area for any creepy crawleys. I got an email that my grandma died the other day as well. I'm not coming home for the memorial and I'm sure some will think of me as a cad for missing the event. I feel bad about it and I feel like I've abandoned you and others to some degree as well. Yes, I think about it.

Anyway on the flip side, It just keeps getting better here. Yesterday I discovered a stash of Holiday packages sent by kids in the US for servicemen. They had more than they knew what to do with and KBR got a bunch and here it is April and there is still some left! I was running out of toothpaste (there is none at the PX) and so I picked up a few packs with toothpaste and other goodies! Now if there were just some medium underwear and socks in some of those packages I'd be set! There is NO medium underware or white socks at the PX here. If you ever go to Iraq, bring plenty of underwear!

So, I'm sending C2 a care package of underwear and socks.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Over the weekend I did some hiking. WOrked around the house.

Matt and Sandy are having marital problems. So I don't hear much of them right now.

C2 in Iraq writes...

I'm glad it's raining there and it even rained a little here (but not much.) ... There's a Great water park in Abu Dabi (I think Vic has been to it) that I think you'd enjoy. The best part is that they use a water slide to take you 'up' as well as down. There was a 'Boston Marathon' here today so I've spent much of my day out taking pics. I also do PR stuff and need to start drafting a weekly newspaper too. Uh, do you have a copy of Publisher? I thought I had one but can't find it.

Yes, I didn't expect things to be all 'peachy-keen' here but frankly, I expected it to be more of a challenge as well. I mean I've not had to deal with one scorpion in my boot or run from any bullets or Anything to that effect! I get all the food that I can eat (free) and we've had lobster at least once a week! I'm almost free from hacking up green stuff, and frankly the worse thing that has happened is that I ran out of socks between laundry and had to go 'sock-less' for one day. Where's the Challenge? So, I'm not complaining (unless you call my last sentence a complaint.) I'm glad you look forward to my emails and I wish I'd hear from Matt/Sandy as well. I do hope they make it.

Well, enjoy the pics. They should be self explanatory. We wear the armoured vest/helmet at least once a week, for practice and for real when they consider things 'hot.' I feel and look like a dork but at least I'm a 'safe dork' (on my way to lunch.)

Friday, April 15, 2005

C2, writing from Iraq...

Work is fine. I have a 'problem' employee that I inherited and she'd 'going away' for a few days to Kuwait. She has problems but don't we all? I missed the body building contest last night as I forgot but there's a power lifting one on this Sunday and I'll try to take some pics. Not much is happening here. Some stuff. Did I send you the pics of the hooches and the decking? They got an award for that deck. Your deck is deserving of such too (when it's finished.) I've got to send some pics to Sandy as well and will do that today. ... I'm still hacking up green stuff and have started to work out again. I'd like to weigh 225 or so by the time I come back in July. Heck, I don't have much else to do here. How's Survivor night going?

Another email...

Living on a military base in a war zone has it's downers. There are your usual explosions and then there are the ones where you say 'that didn't sound right.' They're blowing up stuff all the time around here and usually it's far away, but just this morning was the closest mortar round to date. They (the bad guys) set up a delayed mortar during the night and then it might go off during the night but usually during the day, (which allows the bad guys to get away.) The explosion was BOOM and what did we do? We all ran outside to see it! Then went back to work since it was an attack on the airport/runway. If it caused any damage, they'll have it repaired by noon (it's 10 AM right now.) I should have taken a pic but I forgot the camera but it's your basic mushroom cloud. Anyway, I need to and other boring stuff. I look forward to lunch and dinner as I get to eat and see great haircuts.

Uh, do you have an extra coffee maker that you don't want? One that'll run on 220v? Just thought I'd ask. I need to send you some trinkets too to share with all. What are you doing around July/early August? Want to come to Abu Dahbi? We'll do a layover in Berlin and I'll show you a dungon or two. ... Here's a pic of a scorpion from Vector Control (they handle the creepy crawling things here.)

Sunset in Iraq Posted by Hello

Scorpion in Iraq Posted by Hello

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

C2 in Iraq writes...

My 'weekend'? Hmmm, let me recall.... I worked 12 hours on Saturday and oh yea, I worked 12 hours on Sunday. There really is stuff to do here but I'm trying to make it more 'quality stuff.' For example, I set up a DVD presentation the other day and it took over an hour getting everything together and testing it.

Why hasn't Matt and/or Sandy emailed me yet? Did I piss them off? I've emailed both of them. I may have the wrong email though. I know you're not my secretary but would you please ask about that?

Might you also have C6 and/or Flying J's email? All that I can find is their snail mail address. Thanks.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Sunday evening I went to Taste Washington. It was an all you can taste wine and fine food exhibition. Over 200 wineries where there and lots of great restaurants.

After two hours I was bloated and drunk. I had a lot of great wine, but it all started to blur.
C2 writing from Iraq...

This weekend we're pretty much in armour vests the whole time when moving about the base. Most of the vehicles I ride in have been armoured as well and I must say, there is a comforting feeling driving around in an armoured Toyota Land Cruiser. Very secure and safe. Uh, you've sent no pics other than a fish. Ask RO to help you point out what to take a pic of. RO has has artsy gay-gene thing that say "Wow, now that would make a Fabulous Picture!!" (LOL)

Thursday, April 07, 2005

C2 is in Iraq. He wrote...

Hello All,

How are you doing? ... I've been in Iraq a several days now and before that I was in Kuwait. I'm been sick with 'Kuwaiti Crud' for much of the time. I hack up green smurfs and have nearly lost my voice. It's about 95 here but will get hotter. Keep in touch.

I pretty much work 7 to 7 (if you can call it work) with generous time for breakfast and lunch. At least that's the schedule now. It really should change. Sorry for taking so long to reply. It was a Very long drive to Tallil from Kuwait in armour vest/helmet.

Monday, April 04, 2005

I've started writing C2 longer emails to give him something to do in his copious free time...

Hey C2.

How are things with you?

The weekend here was good. Fairly rainy. Some of the skii resorts have re-opened for spring skiing, but from what I hear the snow is very wet.

Saturday I did house work. The gardens are comming together. Everything is growing right now so I need to stay on top of the weeds. I planted about 100 sunflower sprouts on the hill next to the deck. Hopefully some of them will take off and hide the vines underneath.

RO was in a small accident with his car. He swearved to avoid some deer and ran into the ditch. It broke his axil.

I got a telephoto lens for the camera. It's fun though you need more patience to use it. The extra zoom means it's easier for camera shake to make blury picture. So, unless it's very bright you need to use a tri-pod.

What have you been up to?


Friday, April 01, 2005

I just got off the phone with C2 in Kuwait. Thanks to the magic of internet-phones, and free nation-wide long distance, I can talk to someone half way around the world for free! And the connection sounds good.
C2 is in Kuwait. Mostly he's bored. He sent me this email...

I very much appreciate your email. They have IP phones here that call as if one were in Houston but I don't have a calling card handy otherwise I'd give you a call. I'm 11 hours ahead of you and it's interesting watchin rush hour develop on the traffic cams. I'm staying here in Kuwait at what is referred to as a 4 star villa but it's really dump and 4 stars means there is running water and a flushable toilet. This really is a F#$% up part of the world. I leave for Tallil on Sunday in an armoured vehicle with bullet proof glass/etc. But frankly, the real action is in Bagdad and there is opportunity there too. Also the camle spiders really are over a foot across!