Saturday, November 22, 2008 1800 hrs.
I thought I might begin this post with a funny story about something that happened on my guard shift last night.
So there I was, in the middle of the Afghan mountains with nothing but my trusty S.A.W. and 9 mm by my side and my keen senses and wits to get me through the night. I was on a guard tower. Making sure that all my fellow soldiers could sleep peaceably in their beds because nothing was going to get by me, on my watch.
It was a cold night, the kind of cold that forces your balls to take up residence just beneath your sternum. So as I sat there looking out over the Afghan landscape and shivering, I heard it. The rocks beneath the tower moved. At first I thought that it might be one of my brothers in arms attempting to sneak up on, and scare me. You know, just to make his night go by quicker. So over the edge of the tower I looked. To my chagrin I saw nothing, but I did hear the rocks just beneath me move once more. I again attempted to ascertain what was making the strange noises beneath my tower and scanned the area thoroughly and methodically. I couldn't see anything that could've made that noise.
Satisfied that I wasn't in any danger, I returned to scanning my sector. Mere moments later I heard a new and more disturbing noise. A "tip, tap" rose through the night air and met my ears. Over and over again, tip, tap, tip, tap, tip, tap. Now I was nervous. I couldn't believe that any person had managed to avoid my gaze as I searched for the source of the sound, but you never know. I drew my 9 mm, you know, just in case, and asked my partner in the tower to come and help me find the entity responsible for this maddening noise. And just like when you take your car to the mechanic, as soon as he came out the noise promptly stopped. After listening intently for what seemed like an eternity, he exclaimed, "You're nuts, kiss my ass, I am going back to sleep." And with that he slammed the door behind him and without missing a beat after the door slammed the tip, tap, tip, tap began again.
Now I have looked for the source of this noise through my night vision apparatus, I have looked with the naked eye, I even went so far as to turn the lights on and look under a white light. And yet the culprit avoids my prying eye.
I have begun to wonder whether the cold, and the sleep deprivation are beginning to manifest themselves in the form of eerie noises in the middle of the night.
I return to my post, and begin to scan my sector once again. Like clockwork the steady tip, tap, tip, tap begins again. This time I try to block it out. "You aren't hearing that, you haven't slept in two days your mind is playing tricks on you." No matter what I tell myself the noise grows steadily closer until I can damn near feel the tip, tap rattling my bones.
As I stand there trying to block this noise out and scan my sector at the same time I feel something rub against my leg and before I could even look down to see what it was I heard a soft and sweet, "meeeeeooooowwwww". To which I responded, in an ever so girly voice, with, "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH", and I do believe I jumped at least 3 feet in the air and ran to the other side of the tower. I turned in time to see the face of a cute little kitty cat, which due to my screaming like a little girl was terrified and ran off into the night. Ridiculous as it may sound, I almost took my first "battle shit" due to a 2-pound kitty cat.
And that is the story of the Taliban Tiger, a cute little kitty cat sent by our enemies to scare the shit out of our brave soldiers.
Moving on, what else is going on? Well our stuff isn't here yet. Its supposed to be here on the 24th but needless to say no one is holding their breath.
Now the latest running around the PNN is that someone called a radio station back home and told them that we are short a lot of cold weather gear and so that radio station began a clothing drive for us. A great thing if you ask me. However, another one going around the PNN is that there is an investigation into whether or not the person who called the radio station broke OPSEC.
You see I get OPSEC. It is a good thing. You know the enemy doesn't need to know how many guys you've got, how many guns, how many trucks, how much fuel, food, water and what not. Because all of that is stuff that they could use to determine where and when they are going to attack us. And in this case maybe the enemy doesn't need to know that in a few short weeks we are going to be freezing to death. But sometimes it seems like the military uses OPSEC as justification for silencing those of us who tend to question the authority of our superiors. I don't really question their authority; I just question their intelligence. I mean when a private with 7 months in the Army can figure something out that an Officer can't then maybe there is a problem.
Nothing will probably come of it but just the fact that they would investigate makes me laugh. Someone calls home and makes someone in the chain of command look like a tool, and all of a sudden there has to be an investigation into OPSEC violations. I'll bet that if they wanted to they could dig up some violations in this here blog. But I haven't made it to their radar just yet, but I have only been here a month and we got a long way to go. We'll see.
Other than that it was a good day. I am finishing up with this post and I am off of duty tonight and everyone else in my room has to work, so needless to say I am going to give myself a little TLC and hit the rack. Well it’s about that time.
I love you mom...