Thursday, July 28, 2011

Wake Up Call

It's 2 AM and I'm abruptly awoken by an army of soldiers invading my tent; beautiful silence destroyed.  There were at least 20 of them.  I thought my team and I would remain in control of these dwellings but we have been ransacked. They were as loud as a International MRAP driving through. So much for my much needed sleep. I might as well get used to this until I get my 4 star accommodations in JBad which include a personal room 8x8 with a bed. The anticipation is killing me. In the end they quieted down too near civility after an hour and I tried to take some more sleep hostage. Two hours later the event repeated itself. I must be living "ground hog" day. Where's Bill Murray? I was at wits end so I got up, through my PTs on, and hit the gym to center my inner self.
Today, we were going to try in vein to find our way to the promise land. Our motto "Those that prepare to succeed will surely fail". We are being asked to push from our side while our unit commander Mike M, who is at JBad, tries to pull us there by increasing the rhetoric of our need.  The top priority is to get the surgeons there so an appropriate transition can occur. If not it will be a high-five from the outgoing surgeons and a pat on the back for good luck. We are planning a 2 prong attack.  The first wave will be the XO of our unit, the chief medic and two general surgeons (Matt H and Joe J). Matt H is not with our unit but he is back filling for another surgeon at a base nearby who was medevac out for unknown reasons. The second wave will be everyone who is left for a later flight. In addition, a lot of sensitive medical equipment is here with us, and that needs to find its way to JBad. We also confirmed no further rocket attacks occurred overnight.
It's now one PM and I just received word that the XO and chief medic made it on the flight with all the medical equipment. There would have been room for one more if there weren't so much excess equipment.  Results of wave one have exceeded expectation, but this is just one battle in the war to the promise land.
It seems a large part of the problem we are facing is disconnect between the army and air force. Lack of communication and egos seem to play a role in this situation as well. The two services disagree on what is the most important as a whole and then each defaults to their personal advantage. In this case             (outside of R&R status) air force personnel trump us to gain spots on birds out of here today. We need a unified military not individual services. All I know is when shit hits the fan they'll want to be our best friends.
The rest of the afternoon was a wash. We were told all flight slots were filled and not to even play the "wait and see game". We were told there may be a last minute flight to JBad at 1:50 AM but the air force would not disclose any information until 11 PM tonight; case in point for failure to communicate. I'm optimistically not confident anything will come of this.  It's really starting to frustrate the segment of our team who is already at JBad. They aren't seeing that we are making a large effort to get there and the newly formed tension toward us is without merit. I'm sure this is “just that time of the month” for them and all will be resolved with our arrival; someday.
If my cynicism is getting the best of me, let fate prove me wrong. I'll talk to you in the morning.


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