Wednesday, July 27, 2011


After 3 hour of restless sleep I was awoken by a squadron of departing F-15's screaming in my ears. There is something adrenalin provoking when your so close to that raw power. Its origin surely is a result of my childhood fascination. I remember building mock fighter jets out of unused plywood in my younger years, closing my eyes and imagining I was an "Ace" pilot just like the movies I had seen.  I never lost that desire to fly and in my late teens started working on my pilots license. I completed it with an instrument rating, but never pursued the military aspect because my vision was lacking. I now makeup for that lost adrenaline through wingsuit skydiving, hence my nickname "Birddoc".  

I met my team for breakfast and then we trekked to the hospital for "combat theater" credentialing. This was a nonchalant meeting where I turned over my credentialing packet with the other surgeons and received a brief on do's, do nots, current war time trends, and future tactical plans. Some of the information was classified, so I'd have to take you down if I told you. In summary; it could get interesting and I like you better alive.

Joe J and I hit the "clamshell" gym after for a legendary workout. This  is a unique open air gym in the middle of the base. It has the makings of Venice Beach if it weren't in a third world, war ravaged dust bowl. The absence of beautiful women in bikinis doesn't help either. Afterwards we had a team meeting about ways to leverage ourselves on an earlier flight. The conclusion was to use rank and exaggeration to find our way onto the flight tonight to JBad. Our "ace" rank card is a full bird colonel who needs to get to JBad, and the exaggeration will be military operations need our medical assets to proceed with an important mission. We do have a legit memo from the Bagram hospital commander as well. 

The outcome was less than desirable. We played the game for 2 hour and still were unable to catch a bird to JBad.  My team and I are here to sustain the fighting force but instead they are fighting us. I guess we'll just take a number and pretend we love our vacation here in sunny Afghanistan. Better yet lets make a list of all the wonderful activities we could do. Take a stroll through the old Russian mine fields blindfolded, have a "who can dress most like Osama Bin Laden" competition, go on a hike in the mountains and play "who can find an insurgent". Vacations filled with sun, beaches, bikinis and booze are overrated.

Can't wait to see what we can accomplish tomorrow. We'll just be all that we can be in the mean time as an army of one aiming high.

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