Archive for November, 2009

I am thankful for…

Ok… so I know I’m a few days late for the Thanksgiving boat, but I might as well post anyway!

The dining facility here in Mosul had quite the spread for our Thanksgiving Dinner.  There were, like, six different kinds of meat, and probably 20 sides to choose from, as well as hors d’oeuvres and seasonal desserts.  I don’t like pumpkin pie, so I didn’t have any, but I did have cookies ‘n cream ice cream (it happens all the time actually).  And there was sparkling grape juice, too!  Made it seem a bit more festive, I guess.  It all made me thankful for my taste buds!

Everyone from my detachment that lives in Mosul got together for lunch, and since I am the lowest member of the team, I had to say grace.  I chose a classic Norwegian table prayer that my family always says for holidays and gatherings.  Made it feel a bit more comfortable and “right” for me, so that was nice!  And it made me thankful that I have a great family to be able to share such moments with.

I’m also thankful for:

  • the chance to see other parts of the world and help the people in them.
  • my team here in Mosul.
  • my “home” team back in Tikrit.
  • my roommates both here and in Tikrit, who have made all the difference.
  • my family and friends for their love and support.
  • cheap “haji” movies to keep me entertained.
  • online stores so I didn’t have to feel left out of “Black Friday”.
  • willpower to be able to not spend any money on “Black Friday”.
  • the Army for doing my laundry for me.
  • all the people who have sent me care packages over the last four months.
  • my wonderful humor (that’s just obvious).
  • magazines for inserting samples of fragrances so I can still feel like a girl.
  • my iPod.
  • being a girl because it helps to get things done.
  • my faith.

Of course, that’s not everything, but it’s a pretty decent start…



November 29, 2009 at 11:50 pm 2 comments


I killed the Humvee…

And now they call me the truckwrecker.

And I am sad.

We were driving to chow tonight after we picked up my NCO.  There haven’t been any major problems with the truck recently, and we even just had it in for it’s weekly checkup a few days ago.

But all of a sudden as I hit the gas to start going uphill, we all heard a big “thu-thunk” and the truck slowed to a stop.  I tried switching gears and nothing.  I put it in park and that did not make it happy.  “Cha-rank” was the sound it made that time.

The transmission had dropped… no longer worked.  My truck no longer worked.

The FOB police, Force Protection, pulled up, since we were blocking a main road.  They towed us back to park the truck.  All the way back, it sounded as if a part of the truck was either hitting the ground or hitting itself.  It was horrible!!

So, for now, I am truckless.  And I am a truckwrecker (even though it wasn’t my fault).

November 27, 2009 at 9:10 pm 2 comments

Cute stuff!


So I’ve gotten a few cute things over the last few weeks…

One was a little “grow-a-head” man… sort of like a chia pet… well, he’s got hair now… and I had to give him a hair cute this afternoon.


He got a flat top! 😛

Since the season is quickly approaching, I also got a little Christmas tree in one package I received.

It looks big, but it's on top of a locker...

The bows & ornament came from something that we got from my team chief’s wife.  She sent stuff to all of the teams up here.  My roomie and I got some girly stuff, especially for us!!  Bath & Body Works lotion with soft socks to take care of our feet…


My feet look like candy canes!!


And this came with our socks and was just cute! 😛



November 26, 2009 at 12:10 am 1 comment

Christmas in Kuwait!??

Wow.  Today was a bit of a rollercoaster…

I woke up in a great mood and had a great workout!

I got into the office and was told that my leave would essentially leave me in Kuwait on Christmas Day.  I would so much rather be anywhere else!!  I was fretting about it all day, just ask anyone who talked to me!

It was actually a busy day with getting trucks checked out and having the motor pool guys get in trouble for helping out the two females.  Oh that’s always good… because I am doing my job and getting my vehicles worked on properly, it’s not my fault if the guys want to help me and my roommate more than do anything else.  Technically, they were supposed to help us… but I guess it was the “puppy dog” devotion they were giving us that upset some of the others.  Look, I don’t go to the motor pool to get attention.  In fact, I usually avoid it… but I do need to get my trucks checked out on a regular basis.  That’s the nature of my job right now.  So even though I’m doing my job, I’m not the one who should be told to stay out of the motor pool.  Maybe you should teach your guys to stay professional and treat everyone with the same courtesies.  That said, it was still a fun and entertaining afternoon!

That did help take my mind off the leave thing… for awhile.  I had been told a few months ago that I could get it moved up a few days so that I wasn’t stuck in Kuwait and would instead be at a hotel in Spain with my friends.  But today that all seemed forgotten.  There were plenty of ideas floating around; stay up north and leave a few days earlier, but it would be much harder to pack and stuff would have to be sent up to me and it would just be annoying; or just leave all my stuff; or go back down South now (even though my work here isn’t done).  Either way, I wasn’t happy…

But then tonight, after dinner, I found out that I do get to leave a few days earlier.  And, God willing, I won’t have to spend Christmas in Kuwait!

November 24, 2009 at 8:31 pm Leave a comment

Stupid boys…

UGH!  It is hard enough being a female in the Army, but the guys really don’t make it any easier.

I just about killed a male soldier the other day.  I was doing combatives with my roommate (female obviously) and our two NCOICs (both male).  We’ve been practicing them a lot recently, and each time we sort of draw a crowd.  Really, it’s Jess and I drawing the crowd, which kind of creeps me out.  The other day, Jess was sparring with one of our NCOs when a kid who was watching in the doorway said “I’d pay to see that in the states.”  I just about walked out after him and gave him a piece of my mind…

Seriously, it’s one thing to stand around and stare at two girls fighting.  As a girl, I still don’t get the appeal, but apparently guys think it’s hot.  But to actually say something out-loud, and withing ear shot of us is just plain rude.   It is hard enough being a female in the military, but guys like that just make it harder.  On all of us.

November 21, 2009 at 12:49 am 2 comments


There are always blackouts on FOBs. Some are usually just corrections being made to the electrical grids, some are weather related, and some are more telling than the others.

When someone is killed, all connection to the real world is blacked out. Public phones are closed, and the internet is blacked-out. And it is at the moment that your internet goes down and you get a black screen, that you know that death has once again come to Iraq.

November 18, 2009 at 11:44 am 3 comments

Busy week!

It’s been a busy week!  I went out twice, moved a bunch of soccer balls, a whole bunch of random stuff…

But it’s been a really good week!

I got to go out with one of the other teams to deliver humanitarian aid to a neighborhood.  It was pretty crazy, all of the people who came out to get stuff.

Mosul Schools 006

Lots of food for each family...

And I got to go to a school and (attempt to) speak to a bunch of school girls.  It was a blast… the girls were so excited and they all came out to sing the Iraqi National Anthem for us.  It was very good and very loud.  They were so proud of themselves!  It was really fun to see.

We also received a bunch of soccer balls.  I had to drive the truck around with a trailer on it.  Interesting, since I haven’t ever really driven with a trailer, let alone a trailer on a Humvee, and I had to back it up.  I think I did pretty well… but I got kicked out the driver’s seat a few times! 😛

Soccer balls and mail! 002

My roommie with a box of balls...

November 12, 2009 at 11:14 pm 2 comments

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