Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Mesopotamia or bust

Apologize to my once-loyal readers about the hiatus -- been busy taking care of loose ends at work and at home. Not too much time left to blog about Rita, DeLay, "staged" interviews with the President Bush or the drama that is the Supreme Court.

I'm deploying to Mesopotamia.

Haven't quite figured out what will become of this blog, but I suspect I'll get an idea when I get to my destination (which I'll gladly mention once I get there). I'm well aware of CENTCOM's policies affecting deployed bloggers, and I know that more than a few folks have closed shop as a result. I'd prefer to blog when I get back rather than get all amped up about blogging now and decide to stop because of some dimwitted idiot boss who isn't comfortable with the concept is riding my ass.

Regardless, OPSEC will never be a vulnerability of this site. I make this admittedly bold statement 'cause I know the types of people who monitor military Web sites, base newspapers, emails/attachments etc, and I know what will make them send me/my commander a nastygram. Truth be told: I've logged plenty of hours doing the very same job in a prior life. Suffice to say, it was thankless work, tho I'm thankful someone else is doing it now.

At the risk of being cryptic, Airmen in my career field generally deploy alone, not with a group. That is to say, we have to be our own troop commander, chaplain and logistic planner. In case I don't continue to blog, I'd like to share my list of "must need" items for the trip to a deployed location:

1. Cell Phone: The first time I deployed, I intentionally left my office cell phone at home, thinking I wouldn't need it in theater. Turns out that having a cell phone would have come in useful when I ran into flight delays within the continental United States, and certainly would have been nice to touch base with family during layovers on the rebound.

2. Fold-Up Luggage Cart: Some people get a kick out of carrying A/B/C bags or slinging their worldly belongings on their backs -- I do not. There's no reason to injure yourself on the way to the deployed location, and it looks pathetically ghetto. Buy on of
these and save your energy -- it'll be your best $20 investment.

3. Overnight Backpack: Never know where and when you -- or your luggage -- will end up, so be prepared with a carry-on. Pack toothpaste/brush, deodorant, a set of underwear, baby wipes and snackfood.

Again, this is more for folks who travel solo and/or have no shame in bringing non-issued gear.

So this may be the first of many postings or this may be the last in a while -- I'll let you all know either way soon.