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Afghan Village of Sheenza Wer Receives Medical Aid

http://www.dvidshub.net/?script=news/news_show.php&id=31747

Here is another article that turned up in my Google Alerts hopper.  This one is also written by Guy Volb, and its about a Humanitarian Assistance (HA) mission that my unit completed while I was home on leave.  I was there for the planning of it but didn’t get to go on this one.

Anyways, great article that gives you an idea of what the villages surrounding the Alamo are like.

Made it

I finally got in on Monday.  The good news is I will get an extra day of leave because I had to stay in Atlanta one night.  I’m having a great time and will try to take pictures to share.  If anyone in the area wants to stop by to say hi, I will be at Watson’s in Elwood tonight.

Lauren – Check your email!

Honey,

I haven’t been able to make contact with you from here yet.  I dont think Yahoo Messenger is working.  I’ve emailed you all my flight information, but I don’t know when you will check it next.  I will try to find a working phone around here, but please check your email soon!

Kuwait is a hole!

So I’ve started my trek across the globe and I’m stuck in Kuwait overnight (at least).  This place sucks more than Afghanistan.  At least there you have hard barren dirt.  Kuwait is just sand and gravel.  Plus its hotter.  And I’m sleeping in a tent.  Hmph, I guess I just feel like bitching.  I shouldn’t be complaining too much because this is the road home.

I wonder where my next stop will be…

How To – Google Alerts

While working at CDW last year, I started using google alerts to keep up to speed on what was happening with my clients’ businesses.  Since then I have found many uses for this powerful tool.  Its not one of google’s most popular or well known features, so I thought I would share this with those who have never heard of it.

Check out http://www.google.com/alerts to get started.  You can add criteria for google to search the web for and send you articles, blog entries, news releases, etc… based on a few options and settings.  For example I have alerts set for “Afghan National Army,” “Camp Alamo,” and “JoeGeis.”  By the way, there is a pro surfer out there with the same name as me.  I get a lot of results for him, lol.  I wonder if he would like to trade places?

Anyway, it’s a great way to get information on topics that arent super popular or easy to find.  For example, I wouldn’t set up an alert for something like “Obama,” or “Afghanistan.”  You would just get too many results.  A lot of the time the info isnt quite what I’m looking for, but its easy and does turn up some real nuggets at times.

Enjoy!

Anxious, bored and fidgity

So I’m leaving in the morning to start the trek back to the States for R&R.  I’m all done with work for the day, my bags are packed, paperwork is done and I’m ready to go.  I know its going to be a long moring adventure home (and even more so coming back) so I stopped and picked up the TV series Trueblood from HBO to tide me over along with a copy of the new PC fame The Witcher.  I’ve been anxious to break into the TV series but I’m holding out so I have something to do besides drink coffee all day while I’m stuck at different places along the way.  What really pissed me off is that the game that I bought was aburned copy that doesnt work because it didnt come with a serial number.  Damn bazaar merchants!  Although for $10 what can you really expect…

Anyways, there is no real point to this entry.  I just cant wait to get some R&R!2009-03-12_0306

Afghan National Army Kandak Receives First M-16s for Field Training | Soldier of Fortune

Afghan National Army Kandak Receives First M-16s for Field Training | Soldier of Fortune.

This is an article by Guy Volb, a civillian working in the Public Affairs office here at Camp Alamo.  This article was picked up by SOF Magazine recently.  Its a great example of the progress the ANA is making in improving their Army while building its strength.  Before coming here one of my biggest concerns was that Afghanistan was going to be trying to grow the Army so fast that training would be insufficient resulting in a large, ill-trained and poorly led force.  I have since learned that is simply not the case.

Taliban poised at the gates of Kabul – CNN.com

Taliban poised at the gates of Kabul – CNN.com.

My Dad sent me the link to this story by CNN (Communist News Network) on the security of Kabul and the “Advancing Taliban Hordes.”

The article discusses an attack the Taliban made on a few government buildings a few weeks ago.  Everything they say in the article is true, to the best of my knowledge (I wasn’t there).  It was probably the largest orchestrated attacks the Taliban have committed in the city since the US occupation.  But, the article glosses over the fact that it was Afghan Police officers that eliminated the insurgents and ended the fight, preventing a much greater incident.

Another important factor is that this is one of the only incidents that we have had in the city in a while.

Basically my point is this: although I agree that over the past few years security in Afghanistan has been slipping away from us, we are not in a Vietnam type situation.  The Taliban is not knocking on the doors of Kabul and the city is still a safe haven for peaceful citizens.  With 17,000 more security troops on their way and coalition forces likely to step up as well, we will regain lost ground soon.

Don’t let the media hype scare you.  I predict a large increase of articles like this as the focus is directed away from Iraq and the economy and towards Afghanistan this spring and summer.

Headers by Cindy

Step-mom Cindy created a few headers (I had no idea she knew photoshop, and obviously better than I do!)  so I wanted to post them too.  Anyone else want to have a go at it?

Diet and Workout Help

So in the last few weeks, I’ve really started getting committed to this whole fitness thing.  I have the perfect opportunity to start some good habits that will make the rest of my life healthier, happier and longer (Inshallah!)

Of course, I didn’t really know anything about it or where to start, so as usual, I hit the internet.  I have found some sites and really learned a lot.  I have spent a lot of time researching and making a game plan and I’m dedicated enough to stick to it.

I’ve also found a few very useful tools out there too.  Obviously diet is extremely important while also being something I know absolutely nothing about.  Check out this site  M & S Nutrition to learn how many calories you should be taking in and how to break that down by Fats, Carbs and Proteins.  I about gave up then because I figured there was no way that I would be able to track all that!  Who knows how many grams of fat are in the turkey sandwich I ate for lunch?  Not me!  That’s when I found FitDay.  Its a site that helps you keep track of your diet and has a vast database with many of the foods you already eat.  If something isn’t on there, you can create custom foods too!  It really makes it easy and fun to plan meals for the day.  It makes it VERY easy to meet your nutrition goals.

Just to share, my personal Daily Calorie intake is 2600 (a 500 cal deficit to help lose weight) with 40% carbs, 40% protein and 20% fat.  I lift 3 days a week and do cardio 5 days (overlappign on weight days, with Fridays off.  I also use Friday as my cheat day for meals.)

If this motivates anyone else to make some changes, let me know.  Support is always helpful!