Thursday, April 23, 2009

Flush with Happiness

Here in Kuwait we all have Battle Buddies. Everywhere we go--except stumbling out to the PortaJohns in the middle of the night--we go with our Battle Buddy. The main thing is that we go nowhere alone. So we can travel with just about any other soldier, but most of us have one soldier we travel with more than others.

My Battle Buddy is another old guy (48) who, is a conservative Presbyterian and likes quiet. We are hoping to room together if we end up in a place with 2-man rooms. We room together now, of course, along with 76 others.

For all of us happiness comes in different small luxuries. My Battle Buddy is fond of saying "It's the small things that matter." For him, the discovery that brightened his life (literally) was the latrines 1/4 mile from our barracks that have indoor plumbing and LIGHT. It seems my BB does not like sitting in a dark latrine. Now he knows he can have BOTH flush toilets and lights, he is a happy man.

Speaking of happiness, I could not stop laughing the second day we were here over a joke one of the soldiers made at my expense. In the morning we walk 50 meters west to the PortaJohns and if you want to make a more efficient trip, you can walk 50 meters south to the outdoor running water sinks and brush your teeth. At 530 am I was walking (more like stumbling) toward the PortaJohn holding my toothbrush to make the two-destination trip. A young soldier passed me on his way back from the PortaJohns and said quietly, "Sgt Gussman. The've got some really good blue mouthwash in those PortaJohns."

I thought it was funny at the time. It is typical of the jokes here.

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