Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Gator and Abr-haa

I got to do something useful and fun today. After all the work related emails and reports were done I helped our interpreter pick up some items to assist with the training we do with our Afghan friends. I could have walked out to the gate to help him carry it back, but he assured me it was quite heavy. That and it is Ramadan so he had not had anything to eat or drink since about 0400 in the morning. I thought it best to go and borrow a Gator.

A Gator is a John Deere 6 wheeled diesel small cargo utility truck for use on base. It is quite handy for moving large amounts of luggage, multiple coolers filled with vaccines, or anything else that is heavy and/or bulky. In true military style you must be trained and have a license to operate this complex and powerful vehicle. So having gone through the mandatory training which involved driving in a circle and backing into a parking area, I have a license to operate the Gator. It gets so many looks from our Afghan friends that I almost feel like I am driving a convertible Mercedes. Although to be honest the performance is more like a slow and cranky golf cart. Still it is better than carrying all that stuff.

Today was also notable for a strange presence in the sky. Upon awakening and heading out for the shower building I saw some fluffy white and grey things in the sky. They were of course clouds or Abr-haa in Dari. I had seen only one or two flimsy whispy examples of this meteorological phenomenon in my 2 months here. But today the entire sky was filled with clouds and the temperature was blessedly cool.

Thank God for clouds. Who knows there might even be rain next month?


  1. Here's hoping for a little rain -- and cooler temperatures for all you good guys.

    Paul Hirsch

  2. The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 08/26/2009 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.