I'm with some veteran guys here. They pointed to the horizon yesterday and said, "Here it comes." 50 miles off, you can see a dust cloud as a weather front pushes east. The fine Kuwaiti dust gets pushed ahead and rises to high altitudes as it moves toward us. After the air turns tan color, the rain follows it. The lightning is amazing as it strikes all over the port area.
Finally, after a couple of minutes, the storm (that we could see coming for almost two hours) passes and the sun comes out before it sets. The humidity rockets up. The rain has flashed to humidity, and I break out in an unusual sweat.
Through the night, small scattered showers. Today is overcast, which is a terrific relief. The sun cannot beat us up all day the way it usually does. As I work in my Base-X tent, I can hear the wind tearing at the tentage. The wind and the sun can be brutal to our equipment.
I'm scheduled to do inventory, and I find what I am looking for. I finish ahead of schedule and duck into the ISO shelter for a break. I can hear the Sea Bees outside in the harsh wind cutting with the circular saw. God bless the Sea Bees. They are from a Reserve Unit in the midwest, and they are motivated. They never stop moving.
It's a little after lunch, and I'm on my third 1.5 Liter bottle of water. How hot would it have been if the sun had been out? Holy crap! There are half finished water bottles every where. The shop I work in is buzzing with activity, and that is when I realize that these people have formed a tight group even though they come from very different locations.
The Navy staffs facilities like this with Individual Augmentees (IAs). That means none of these people have ever worked together before. They are pulled, individually, from all over the Navy, and put here. Normally, this would be a source of friction. Being thrown into a group of people that has been thrown together ad hoc is a recipe for disaster.
But what comes out the other end? A tight knit team. Wow! How does that happen? It happens because we have professionals. We have them dedicated to a very serious mission. We have the finest troops in the world. Period. End of conversation.
Keep up the good work buddy and especially keep reporting on the up beat moral of our troops, somehow I wasn't at all suprised having spoken to many troopers in theatre that the moral of the individual troops is so much higher than reported on the news. As was mentioned at the 2007 Milblog Conference, it always seems that the news media finds the 3 disgruntled troopers to get an interview from, just like they can always find the one person that will complain about the federal or state response to an emergency.
Stay Safe, Keep drinking water and maybe next time I can join you "Out Here"!