A Soldiers Story:Letters From Iraq
April 27, 2008
Letters From Iraq Archive

Sunday, April 27, 2008 4:13 AM


Good Night

just another day like any other. HOT. not too windy, so the air's breathable. havn't seen rain since i got here. i havn't spent my birthday in the same place since i was seventeen, mostly by chance but sometimes on purpose, but i never thought iraq was much of a destination location. at least i have the day off- been relaxin'

i've spent the last three nights out under the stars at the mortar point, just sleeping beside the truck. i don't think i've slept with my boots on since that week i mistook Boston Common's park benches for the local motel when i was nineteen, but you gotta stay 'ready.' this time i at least have a cot, even if it is a whole foot too short it's still better than being stuck inside the stryker.

last night was the first time we almost got to do something. battalion fires called for us to plot a fire mission just in case... we had already heard them call over to the artillery guys about twenty minutes prior w/ the same mission. we did all the prep work and got the gun set up etc.. they ended up giving the mission to artillery. oh well. i'd be lying if i said i wasn't a little amped up. this would have been the closest thing to 'exciting' that i'd seen. i'd been doing a slow scury around getting things ready, -none of us believed we were actually gonna fire- just hangin' out in my t-shirt (noone important around to hastle us about proper uniforms). what kind of guy has 'sergeant, please let me blow something up' on his birthday list? well, there are a lot of them over here.

-the artillery cannons shake the ground even though i'm all the way across the fob. to give you some idea of distance, from the time i see the muzzle flash it takes a full five seconds for the sound of the shot to reach me. it's kinda cool to be able to hear the radio traffic between battalion command, the gunner and the forward observer out in the field while you watch the rounds go out. no, you can't actually see them-

this was the second letdown this week. the morning i woke up out at the COP, shortly after i crawled out the back of the 'gunslinger' stryker, i heard BOOMboom off in the distance. (it turned out a civilian vehicle had hit an IED) the commander wanted to go check it out and secure the route until 3rd platoon arrived. we loaded up in the back of the gunslinger truck but then sgt jenkins decided we should be the airguards in the commander's truck so we ran over there-- but the commander rolls w/ the snipers so the hatches were already filled.

again, from inside the truck you have no idea what's going on outside, and now i don't even have a headset. there's a good chance we'll have to dismount when we get to where the 'boom' was and i'm set to be the first one out the ramp. we rolled around for a while.. the guy next to me looks ready to go. oh, no. he's asleep. -not too worried- we eventually stopped. ok? maybe? one of the snipers leaned down from the hatch and says "hey! we're back at the COP. get out and go back to [the mortar truck you originally came here in]." -maybe one day.

the best thing that happened to me today was running in to my buddy alfred outside the chow hall. i havn't seen him since we split in kuwait. he's been at another base further north since then and i've had no way to get in touch w/ him... so this was no small consolation. it's always good to see a friend, especially in a place like this. i don't mean to sound like i'm having a tough time. everything i've had to do here has been easy to do, handle and comprehend (besides the fact that we're still here). but certain things gain a different meaning when you're... here.

thank you all for writing. it means a lot to stay in touch.

much love,

A Soldiers Story:Letters From Iraq

A Soldiers Story
  04-03-08 - In Kuwait
  04-05-08 - STILL In Kuwait
  04-06-08 - Headin' Over
  04-13-08 - at FOB Warhorse
  04-13-08 - (Untitled)
  04-19-08 - Settled?
  04-25-08 - Outside The Wire
  04-27-08 - Good Night
  05-09-08 - In Recent Retarded News ...
  05-17-08 - Meh
  06-17-08 - Home, Finally Got Hookup
  06-18-08 - P.S...
  12-09-09 - Playing Tourist In Iraq
  01-27-10 - Meet Haji

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