Thursday, November 11, 2010

Iraq Bike Stolen on Veterans Day

Today I went to lunch with a friend in Center City Philadelphia.  I rode my bike to lunch.  Chained it to a u-shaped metal pipe for locking bikes and went to lunch.  When I came out from lunch the bike, my helmet and the lock were gone.

Which bike?  The one I bought for Iraq and rode for almost my whole tour--a red Trek T-1 single speed.  If you ride in Philly, bike theft is going to happen.  I'll miss that particular bike like an old friend because I rode it in Oklahoma for the train up and for almost the whole deployment--I broke the crank with a month to go on my tour, but Bike Line of Lancaster fixed it when I got back.

I don't suppose I'll ever see it again, and I do have other bikes.  But I really liked that bike and will always remember the looks I got from turret gunners in MRAPS and Humvees when the say me riding with my rifle on my back.

Homesick for the DFAC


Three times in the last two weeks I stopped for breakfast on the way to work in Philadelphia.  Usually I don’t eat breakfast.  I drink coffee at home.  I drink coffee when I get to Philadelphia and sometimes buy a loaf of bread from Fork (a local restaurant that bakes its own bread). 

Today, I stopped at the buffet in The Bourse in Philadelphia.  It’s just any buffet.  It is an American buffet run by an Chinese family.  They have creamed beef, fried potatoes, bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs, bagels, toast and all the greasy starchy stuff anyone could want for breakfast on the hot line.  But they also have six or seven different kinds of just-cut fresh fruit:  watermelon, honeydew, mango, kiwi, pineapple slices, grapes and then everything mixed together in fruit salad.  Its all fresh and bright colored on an immaculate serving line.

I miss the cut-to-order fruit every morning at the DFAC.  I only eat a little of several things because it is expensive.  If I ate breakfast in Iraq DFAC quantities, it would cost $25.  But for $5 I can get enough to remind me of one of the really good things about Iraq.  The best thing here is when I walk outside there is no sand and no dust storm.

Maybe around the holidays if I am really hungry, I’ll eat like a soldier one morning.

Happy Veterans Day!