Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Another Update

Well, it has been a little while since I wrote anything that was worth reading. Now I am going to see if I can keep your attention for a little while.

Tomorrow is Courtney’s birthday and she will be six. SIX!!! My little girl is six. Where in the hell did time go? Oh wait…that’s right…I spent a year of that in Afghanistan and now another one. Being a father and in the military is not easy. You miss a lot and it hurts at times. Oh and she is graduating Kindergarten today as well. I am so proud of her and wish her mom would answer the phone for once so I could tell her. It drives me crazy.

Life here isn’t too bad. I have been doing the best I can, but of course I keep screwing up. It is little stuff that is adding up. OK, one was very important. But I fixed it. My room is pretty crappy. It is not as nice as Bagram but the only thing I do there is sleep. The rest of the day I am in the office. Hopefully it will get better. Oh and I get my first day off is tomorrow as well. I was not expecting one, but I got one. I plan on running a lot and getting caught up on some sleep. I am really starting to feel it now and when I get tired, it is not good. Mom says I get grouchy, but in this environment, it is different.

Mom and dad are doing good. It is weird for me to be gone like this and Jeremy at home. Last time we were gone together. He just better not leave when I get home. I will kick his ass!!

We are starting our R&R in Jul and I hope that I do not get stuck going so early. Mainly because I have not saved for a bike yet and I have been dropping all my money on bills and not ready to go on leave. It was not be too much fun to get stuck this early either. Only time will tell.

People ask about life here. Well, we have the biggest and nastiest beehives I have ever seen in my life right outside our door. There is also a small garden out here too. Not much, but enough to drive the sinuses insane. The heat…oh man the heat…its crazy. At 9am today it was 97 and the high was 107. Pretty sure it was well past that today. The food is not that bad but the Afghan Kitchen is pretty good. For $2 you get a lot of food and it is good. I ate it once, but I want to eat it more. With it being cash only here, I have to conserve my cash. We have no ATM or “Eagle Cash Card” systems here. Finance comes once a month and we can get cash then. The outgoing mail is only once a month as well. We do get mail every day but Wed though. Overall, I would rather be here than Bagram. Like I said it is not too bad here. The hardest part is getting used to the air here. I am trying really hard to get a PT Test score though. I need it so that I can get ready for the board and hopefully get promoted. I am trying to get to SSG before Jeremy does, but I doubt that will happen.

Once I get the PT test done, I will be able to start planning my reenlistment. I am not sure how long for this time, but my plans are another 16 years on Active Duty. I want that retirement. I am praying a lot about how to reenlist. I can choose to stay at Fort Campbell, choose a reclass into another job and hope I get Fort Campbell again, pick a location (out of the question because I want to stay at Fort Campbell for now). If I take the chance of reclassing, I would not know where I am going until I finish the school. The job I want, with computers, is about 6-8 months long at Fort Gordon, GA. The Army will send me where they need me. If that happens, I will have to put my house up for sale and not sure how that would turn out. So many things to decide on. I wish this decision was easier.

Oh, I cannot forget the mosquitos here. Holy crap are they bad. I have never seen like it before. We are required to take malaria pills here because risk is so high. The last unit that was here had 3 cases. One was actually taking the medication.

I typed this up on the computer at work and emailed it to myself so that I could copy and paste onto the blog quickly when I got a chance. Well, I have plenty of time and I added to some things.

Well, I am calling it a night and headed off to my room. God Bless you all and thank you for the support.

SGT John Strader

PS: Not sure if I posted my address or not, but here it is:

John Strader
APO AE 09310


Anonymous said...

Thanks for all you and the other military personnel do for our country. I know it may be hard being away from home but I hope you enjoy the Memorial Day Weekend. I too have a little girl who is finishing up kindergarten. Time goes by so fast. As far as the big decisions on enlisting; pray about it and eventually with time you will see your answer clearly! Take it easy!

Cincinnati Gal

Anonymous said...

You're in our thoughts and prayers this Memorial Day weekend.

Thank you for your service to our country.

Vivi said...

God Bless you and your family,

Anonymous said...

thank you for your service and I will be praying for you and your daughter and the rest of your family. be safe.