Monday, March 1, 2010

Day in the life of a modern day soldier

Yep, we'll be keeping the postman busy this year.

Here's the first package to go out from my daughter to her hubby.

DSC_0309

Looks like it made it to its destination.

Soldier boy didn't have an address during his short stay in Kuwait so we didn't know how we'd get a birthday package to him. But we should have known, God always provides.

Kind friends in Kuwait were able to assist in making sure he received his package in time for his birthday.

This whole adventure makes me realize what a small world we really live in.

I'll always think of this couple in a fond way and I’m reminded of the verse,

"Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality." Romans 12:13

They are truly living it!

May God bless them in a foreign land until their return to the States.

john dean lana

Soldier boy has written another letter to us and I'd like to share with you. If you missed his first letter you can catch it here.

Hopefully it will give you some insight of a modern day American soldier and his daily life.

~

“As my time here in Kuwait comes to an end I can share the experience thus far.

It started at cold Camp Shelby, I was sure my destination would be warm so I chose not to wear any snivel gear. [Snivel gear is defined as rain gear, jackets, or anything that protects you from wet or cold. Tough guys don’t use snivel gear, wink wink.] 34 hours later I arrived at my destination, a cold and rainy Kuwait. Great, my first time in the desert and it is cold and raining. We made our escorted and secure movement to the base and got checked in shortly before midnight of the 31st. This is significant because 1 day in a combat zone equals tax-free pay for that month!

The next 4 days were rough trying to adjust to the loss of 9 hours. Not sleeping during the day was hard and I figured sleep would come easy at night but it was as if the body knew it was day back home and after a few hours of sleep I would wake up and stay awake. I finally got adjusted after 4 days or so. The base here was a big improvement over our previous home. We have Internet access, fast food, great food in the dining facilities, awesome gym and other recreational places, a movie theatre, etc. The training here is very good and the schedule was very easy to allow time to adjust for the lag. The tents we live in are heated and cooled. The material is very thick and coated so the hot sun doesn’t turn it into an oven. The only knock on this place is sleeping on cots and jamming so many people in a tent. With all of the other good stuff, how can you complain though?

Some unique experiences thus far have been seeing camels out in the desert. 1 day we had to stop as a herd of them crossed the road! The desert has its own beauty somehow. A barren landscape with dunes and sparse vegetation wouldn’t seem beautiful but looking out as far as the eye can see with nothing but sand gives you a sense of just how small you are in the big picture and how great God is. That is beautiful. Also out here are Bedouins, people that live in the desert and herd camels and sheep. They usually live in tents or in trailer homes pulled by a big water truck! Some of these tents are enormous and some have compounds with multiple tents surrounded by a wall. Outside some of these tents you will see a H2 Hummer or Toyota Land Cruisers. Yes, $50,000 cars outside of tents! These tents have electricity and I can only assume what they have inside. I am thinking the well to do Bedouins don’t herd animals but I could be wrong. The Superbowl aired at 2 a.m. so I woke up at 1 and went to the theatre. The MWR (morale, welfare, and recreation) folks had pizza, soda, chips, and candy, and door prizes. It was actually a lot of fun as the crowd was into the great game but they can’t show commercials over here so all of the commercials were little clips of players saying hi to the troops. At one point I thought about how they show groups of soldiers watching stuff on TV back home, now I was one of those guys! Lastly, some friends of my MIL actually work here! That has been a very nice surprise to meet good Christian people out here to bond with.

I try to soak up everything I can as I realize this is a special adventure that I am on. I also want to share this with my boys some day so I write in a journal every chance I get. I talk to my wife everyday that I can and we share pictures and notes on facebook because email is too slow and limited. I miss everyone terribly, there is nothing to remind you of home here except what things you brought with you. The Army does a great job of having a variety of activities and services available so soldiers stay busy, but nothing can substitute seeing your little boys grow up or the soft touch of your wife. Unfortunately there are plenty of ugly reminders of why I am here so staying focused on the task at hand is easier than I thought it would be. Faith in God and dedication to the mission will get me and my guys home soon and safe. I look forward to that day; it will be oh so sweet!”

john

Until we hear from you again,

Be safe, soldier boy!

Since his birthday gift is all wrapped in red,

I'm sharing it today with others at Ruby Tuesday.

8 comments:

Felisol said...

That was a strong report from the reality we hope we'll never see.
Your son sounds so determined and conscious. Putting his trust in the Lord and willing to do the best he can where he is.
I've said a prayer for him, for his safe return.
The pictures were touching, the package for your son's birthday.
A piece of American history.
From Felisol

podso said...

I just love it when you post about your soldier boy. Helps us to remember the sacrifice others are making for us. Great pictures of here and then there! And the small world connections God brings to make us smile!

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Thank you for sharing this journey with us...YAHOO to all our servicemen and women that give us our FREEDOM each and every day...that I never take for granted...My grandson will be leaving in Dec with the Army also...God Bless them all...hugs and smiles Gl♥ria

♥ Kathy said...

That was incredible.. Happy Ruby Tuesday

Robin said...

Stay safe Soldier Boy, and happy birthday.

- Robin from Israel

daylily777 said...

Happy Birthday To your son !I will pray he stays safe & for all who are there .Thanks for sharing , wonderful post !
Blessings,
~Myrna

Susan L (lily40au) said...

I love stories to go with the memes and I added one too ... of my daughter's new job andher bright red nails.

Marice said...

what an amazing post! happy birthday to one great man!

u may view mine here