Tuesday, November 02, 2004


Everyone waits from time to time. The world awaits the outcome of the US election. A whole bunch of insurgent knuckleheads are hunkered down in Fallujah awaiting their impending doom. Amazing how so many folks and so many events await the culmination of this uniquely American spectacle that has become the presidential election process.

I happily mailed off my ballot for Dr. Michael Peroutka some time ago. Of course some might say that was a wasted vote but it was my conscience. I think you always have to go with that. What else does a man have if he does not listen to his conscience?

I had a fascinating discussion with a Marine buddy of mine tonight as we sit and wait for all the “big events” in the world to transpire so that we can again get on with the business at hand.

Really in the big picture it does not matter who wins the election. There is not that much difference in the two fellows or the two parties. An Australian buddy of mine expressed to me his wonderment at the passion Americans display based upon parties. From his perspective there is little difference. My view has been much the same for several years now.

It is fascinating; in all the time we have spent together we have never had the opportunity to discuss philosophy or life. As we sit and wait we found the time tonight. We agree that there is nothing new under the sun and that there is little that we as mere mortals can do to alter the course of events. We envisioned a couple leathered warriors of Rome’s legions sitting next to a fire a few hundred years ago having the exact same discussion we enjoyed tonight. I am almost certain there were some of those fellows on the far edge of the empire fighting various barbarians (insurgents in modern parlance) pontificating on the same issues we covered. My mind always goes back to the words of Vegitus.

Good folks are so hard to find. I have been so lucky here to encounter many.

I have the pleasure to work with two of the last best Sergeant Majors left in the military (I am sure there are probably a handful scattered here and there but they are few and very far between). SGM V is a heck of a guy, the sort of guy that is there for you and there for the troops no matter what. Likewise with SGM C, different sort, a lot less dirty (no sure how he works that out because I see him in the same places as me). V is much more the “SGT Rock type” and C is much more the stereotypical British Sergeant Major type. Both are fine men and excellent NCO’s. Not typical at all.

The other officers I work with are all (with one exception) mustangs (all prior enlisted). At 38 I am not the old man in this group, which is nice. The perspective of these fellows is just a whole lot different; refreshing, real and comforting. We weaned the last of the Air Force folks from the team two weeks ago and shuffled them off to “other work”.

We got a new Navy Senior Chief in last week. We have three other Navy folks. They have all adjusted very well. Senior Chief is a bit like a fish out of water, he has spent 20 years aboard Subs. He is not exactly accustomed to carrying a rifle and could not tell the difference between incoming mortar and rocket rounds when he came to us. I have a lot of respect for the fact that he knows when to shut his mouth and follow on task he has no clue and is willing to speak up on the technical issues he is here to do. We took him to a make shift range and gave him a bigger weapon the other day. I think we will turn him into a soldier. He is certainly willing to learn. I think a a couple months he will be a real veteran and able to carry his own weight. He and I get along very well.

I think I mentioned before my love for the troops with us. No matter what we do or where our tasks pull us there are there to support with nothing more than the expected complaints (if they did not complain a little something would be wrong…I would take that as them not trusting me).

It is raining here now…I doubt it will really stop for the next month. It is a crazy place, hot and dry all year with just one rainy month. Makes you wonder how this was potentially one of the cradles of civilization. The fine powder sand has all turned to muck. This is of course very much irritating. Not the sort of stuff you really look forward to laying face down in. Amazing that it is possible to wish for the weather of June but I do.

I notice some folks were kind enough to link over to me. I appreciate that. I do not have the time to really track them down and post their links. I actually feel rather bad as I do not have the time to write much of interest to anyone and I would hate for people to take their time to visit the site in these circumstances.

Recedite, plebes! Gero rem imperialem
El Cid

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