Saturday, September 18, 2004

When Star Wars Ruled the World

I know it's been a few days since I posted last, so here's what's been happening. I've done my first week of classes to re train on my job in the Army. We will be finished with the class by end of next week and I'll get orders to the next part of this journey. My job, in case you don't know, is called 98c Signals intelligence analyst. Rent Enemy of the State with Will Smith and Gene Hackman. That movie shows, in a Hollywood way, the civilian equivalent of my job. It really is pretty cool if you are actually doing the job and not just looking at oil drip out of the bottom of a Humvee. Which, believe it or not, is something you have to do in the military. Not only do you have to watch it, you have to document it.

The last week has been classes. Friday night Kentucky ad I went to a high school football game to break up the monotony. It was fun to be out away from the post. Today I am watching a special on TV called "When Star Wars Ruled the World". I'm going to watch the movie Pearl Harbor later today. That is the height of the excitement here at Goodfellow.

One interesting turn of events happened this week. One of the guys going through this refresher course with me got his next set of orders. So far we get orders to one place, do whatever it is we need to do there and get orders to the next place. That has been a little frustrating. You know the end destination is Iraq but you have no idea how many stops there are between here and there. I would rather just get there, do the mission and come back. Anyway, This guy got orders to go to a reserve unit down south who is mobilizing to go to Iraq. This is good and bad from my point of view. Good because you go to Iraq with a chain of command that hopefully will take care of you instead of going over as an individual and getting stuck where ever with whoever doing whatever. Bad because it extended his orders six months. I don't think I'll get extended right away like he did for two Reasons. First, He got his initial orders a few months before I did when they were just recalling a few soldiers here and there. His orders were for 12 months where as mine were for 18 months. I think the whole point of this is to spend a one year rotation in Iraq so they built in 6 months to train and deploy. He also had a problem with his security clearance because after he got out of the Army the first time he married a Canadian. Apparently that's a security risk that needed further exploration. The reasons I don't think my orders will be extended are as follows. First, I think the Army realized the re training portion was taking longer so they started issuing them for 18 months from the start. Second, I have no problems with my security clearance.

I'm glad they looked into the Canadian issue. You sure don't want all those Canadians rushing across our border and using up all of our non socialized expensive health care, or taking all the fish out of our lakes in Minnesota, or rushing in to teach us how to play hockey....Well, I guess that's all they would do. So good thing were watching.

Aside from leaving my family this hasn't been too bad so far. I spoke with a person who had just gotten back from Iraq and she said some pretty interesting things. She said that the enemy can't aim worth anything and, unless it's front line fighting stuff, the only time people are hurt or killed is when the enemy is lucky and we do something stupid at the same time. The thing that sounds the most dangerous to me is when you have to convoy. You hear about IED (Improvised Explosive Devices) going off during convoys. She said she did at least two convoys per day and only ran into one IED. She said it did little more than throw some rocks and dirt into the air. I realize it probably depends on where you are but I'm going to accept what she says and not worry too much. What choice do I have anyway.

Well, the Star Wars show is talking about Boba Fett Pez dispensers so I'd better pay attention.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I said the Sunday before you left I was surprised that you to were a 98C also. Was your friend 'Kentucky' in the ASA when he was in? Your comment about Vietnam was pretty accurate, people don't want to know the reality of war, they want the security we provide and not worrying about it comeing to them. Yours REB

4:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Garth, It's Karen Keller from Harvest. We just got back from vacation and found your thank you note and blogspot address in the church outline last week. I intend to monitor your daily diary, to keep you in my thoughts and prayers. George and I pray for you and his son Chris Keller who is in Iraq right now. Have you met any other believers and do they offer any chaplain services while you are in training at Goodfellow?
May God keep you in his tender care.

10:04 AM  
Blogger m. pads coach said...

Have you finished that book "A Table in the...." I've been wanting to read it, been eyeing it for awhile. Is it worth it? I've enjoyed reading about your daily escapades-good to know what you're up to so you don't seem so far away.

10:28 AM  
Blogger kentuckywife said... is kentuckywife. i have never read a blog before...i enjoyed meeting write well & i enjoyed your humor...heard you got your next set of orders...good luck & thank you for your service...sincerely, kentucky wife

9:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey - E sent me the link to your blog. It's cool to be able to hear what you have been up to. I'm so glad Mrs. GWM got to visit you! Give her a hug from me! I'll be checking back often - take care. Love you guys. - Mel

9:40 PM  

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