Friday, October 23, 2009

On the Road

Sorry no pictures, technical difficulties.

I started my trip to Kabul yesterday. We stayed on the German run base at Marmol, which has an airport. We had to wait until the next day for a flight into Kabul. Like all people who live on a small sized Camp we had to tour around the "big city" and observe all the ammenities available. The Norweigans have a nice PX and will actually accept dollars. There is also a small pizzeria as well. I think the Norweigan chow hall was the best part of the base though. Their food is catered through SODEXO. As further proof that it is the best chow hall on the camp, I noticed almost all of our Italian brethren eat there. The food was good. One difference between the US chowhalls and the Norweigan one is desert. There is no desert in the Norweigan chow hall. In US chow halls you can make an entire meal out of deserts.
I got to talk a little Italian to some Italian soldiers at Marmol which was both fun and humbling. It is amazing how much of a language you can forget in two years. They were nice guys and tolerated our invasion of their tent very well.
Another topic I have failed to adequately describe is that of money. For US forces in the northern region there is only one way to get cash. Nope, there are no ATMs. Nope, there is no finance office. The only way to get cash is when a team comes up to cash checks every month or two. Now don't get me wrong. There isn't a whole lot to spend money on at Camp Spann. There are the haircuts, the small PX for toiletries and such, the bazaar, and phone cards for calling home. That is the sum total of expenses at Spann. Since I am running short on cash I planned to get a little more cash while here in Kabul. Unfortunately I found out it will take another trip and some extra effort to accomplish.
The nice part about Kabul so far has been seeing most of the folks I trained with at Ft Riley. It is almost like a mini reunion. Thankfully everyone is well and still mentoring away.
Thank you USO, free wireless internet. Wow, this is the big city.

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