Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Semester Break Blues

Before we left Pennsylvania the guys who had been deployed before warned us people would start to fall apart at six months. My wife wrote today to remind me of the parallels between how here students feel after parents weekend--missing there family with a long semester ahead--and how I have been feeling lately.

Well here we are at six month and the predictions are, unfortunately, coming true. Two mechanics are home in the USA getting knee operations, one from a touch football game and another from a sports injury that was not healing. There have been a lot of jokes about "When's the next football game?" and "Do you need anybody to work on a roof, sarge?"

And we are getting lectures on getting slack--except we report for work at 0700 and many of us do PT before work. Some soldiers are getting vehicles. The vehicles are restored wrecks that are less than perfect and an average of 15 years old. And at the same time, the rules about driving them are tightening up. Any traffic ticket is a visit to the Sergeant Major for the first offense and an article 15 (loss of pay and/or rank)for the second offense. So having a vehicle is not such a great thing that way.

The weather is following the generally declining mood. Usually we wake up to a blue sky and 84 degrees at 0500. The weather becomes hot, windy and dusty by 0700, but the beginning is nice.

Today at 0530 the temp was 94, the wind was up and dust filled the air. It just keeps getting worse. The motor sergeant released the mechanics at noon today because the conditions were so bad outside.


THE FREAKY ORANGE COLOR OF SUNLIGHT DIFFUSED THROUGH DUST



DUST STORM ON THE AIRFIELD

The running race was canceled this morning and it was so dusty I did not ride. I am not riding at 6pm either so this will be the first day since I got back from leave that I have not made at least one circuit of the post on the bike. But the weather is so far beyond foul I will ride in the gym.