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Friday, November 10, 2006

Loose Lips

I've never done this before, but the anonymity of this format allows me to loosen up some of my habitual reserve. My son sent me an email today and I'm going to share some of it.

*****

Sorry about the delay, the internet place had a line and I couldn't retype my message. But, I am alive, and well. Our schedule has been really crazy lately. I don't get much sleep, and pretty consistently ... am up for 24 hours or more. The missions we go on are pretty mundane, but they tend to be dangerous nonetheless. IEDs, EFMPs (shape charges that completely destroy up-armored humvees) are constant problems.

Hopefully as we get more settled in it gets a little calmer, but no one can be sure. Our ... missions are going pretty well....

I try to check my email at least every 3rd day just in case. ... I try to limit communication because if I keep up a constant stream, when it breaks for one reason or another, everyone will freak out. If something did happen to me, you would know within a day or 2 anyway.

... Ok, I'll try to call soon, but it's hard to buy phone time here (you have to buy a specific, monopolized, phone card).

Keep me in your prayers, talk to you soon.

*****

Isn't that interesting? But what's with this "line"? What's with this "monopoly"? Well, at least the lines of communication are open and fast for official bad news. Or was that petty? Well, I've had bad news before. Maybe I'll get used to it. But that's just morbid.

He says the food is unbelievably fantastic. A morale thing, no doubt. Compensation for the MRIs. But the mess hall is mortared every now and then. So no lingering over the split peas. In and out. Was that a secret? Hope I didn't give aid and comfort to the enemy, domestic and abroad.

He doesn't have to call me.

If any of you know how to pray, who fly in and alight for a brief moment in this unrestful oasis, please do for my son. What else is there?


J

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey J, My wife and I will be praying for you and your son. you are right about faith being the mainstay - the rock amidst an ocean of turmoil. We had two sons in Iraq (Marines) so know that part of it - i was also there for 15 monthw as a contractor keeping generators running for the army. Maybe I can fill in some of the holes for you. The food services on the large bases and some of the small ones is really great - it is one of the biggest morale factors. The lines for the phones can be long and yes, there is usually only one provider - but that is more of a contract and supply thing - Iraq isn't a garden spot where most suppiers are will to go. Some bases do have free phone and internet cafes - if your son has not been there long have him ask around for one. I know the phone providers often provide free phone time around the upcpoming season. The lines are because of the large number of people that a limited number of phone lines serve. When I served in the military a number of years ago phones and internet were not even available - so my only form of communication was snail mail - so be really grateful for a phone call or email once or twice a week - it's all perspective.

I pray that your son returns safely, as ours did.

God Bless
BB

Maewynia said...

I will pray. Don't know his name, but he'll be 'Jack's son' on my daily list. I am so proud of the men and women who have the guts and the honor to enlist and serve this country and the cause of democracy. I commend you for having raised such a good son. These are the true nobility in America, these are the true elite. On this Veterans Day, I salute you both.

Maewynia

Anonymous said...

Jack,
My family and I will cetainly add your son to our prayer list. We wish you all of God's blessings on this Veteran's Day and always.
Pax, Elizabeth

Jack H said...

Thank you all. My grim heart is touched. :-)

J

Anonymous said...

I'm a little late, but let me chime in. I recently found your blog and am trying to catch up.

Reading this post and seeing 4 comments made me have to post also.

I am in Kabul, and have been nearly 2 years. For this deployment I am an evil capitolist contractor. It's my turn. For 26 years I held the enemy at bay as a Marine. Now I can go those places and get paid for it, too.

Life is good.

Now it's my son's turn. He recently finished his first tour of Iraq and is trying to transfer into another unit to return soon. I heard that call too many times not to recognize it in my son. I still have no idea how to explain it to his Mother.

Your son in in my prayers, as are all our Men and Women around the world, in harms way, or just waiting.

As in service to God, so also to Country; They also serve, who only stand and wait.