You Know, Some Random Stuff

Wednesday, September 24th, 2003

Ok, a word or two on some things I’ve been meaning to do and write.

First, I’m going to start on the writeups from my last R&R. Really, I am. First I need to go through and reduce the size of all the pictures and then get them uploaded. It doesn’t take so long to expand on most of my notes, it’s just that I’m lazy. It’s not that I’m lazy, it’s that I just don’t care! Gotta love “Office Space.” I need more. My office is too small, especially to share with commo.

We had a rare surprise yesterday. Not only did the Uzbek Air Force have two birds up flying at the same time (which is unusual enough) they were actually flying in formation! I have never seen them do that. Of course, they were keeping it fairly simple, and staying directly over camp for the most part, but it was neat to see.

I was working on a machine last night and had some good ol’ Double Bubble gum that they had left laying out. It reminded me of a time when I was 4ish, and there was a school fair type of thing where my mom taught. I think my dad was in Korea at the time, so we had to be there since it was at night time. I spent most of the time in my mom’s room, where there was some kind of shuffleboard game. Of course, the prize was a piece of Double Bubble gum. I won a lot. It’s interesting the kind of things that bring to mind other things so long forgotten.

Speaking of those who are gone, our Site Supervisor left last week, bound for greater things. Dave really was a character. Another character in his own right, AB, provided the entertainment in the cookout we held in Dave’s honor. AB enthralled us with the “Shit to Do” song before moving on to a K2-specific version of Clarence Carter’s “Strokin’.” He played several others on his guitar and sang. It’s harder to be as creative on near beer I guess, but he did a good job. Several other honky tonk classics and good acoustic singer guy songs followed, and at some point the “Afraid to Fart” song got played. I suspect he stole that one from Adam Sandler but I am not sure. Of course, we can’t forget “Suzie the Skank.” No one can forget Suzie the Skank…

I had an interesting thought the other day. My car will be paid off next paycheck – I could have paid it off this check but decided to leave that money in savings for just in case. The rest of the check will go to the student loan, which will be paid off in another month and a half. The funny thing is that I have spent this year happily watching as debts were crossed off the list, and I could check my progress in Quicken, often daily, planning what to eliminate next. As I went through this process, I note that I have less and less reason to check Quicken since the bills are almost all gone. I think after this year I will have 3 payments to pay attention to each month. Two storage units and…I’m not sure, something else. Hmm…insurance every six months. Teehee. The funny thing is that next year I’ll just check on a rising balance, but the sense of satisfaction will be different as I will just be adding money, but not really doing anything per se. I don’t get to check anything off my list. Razz

Oh, and they seem to have gotten a few boxes of Lucky Charms and Trix into the DFac. That’s pretty cool, too.

The Debt Reduction Train Keeps A Rollin’

Friday, June 13th, 2003

I have no more credit card debt, paid off the last today. I have only my car, and one last student loan to go. Looks good for being totally debt-free at my year point. I suppose that depends on how spendy I get on the R&R and MWR trips, but it would be close in any case.

I’ve paid off 3-4 credit cards (forget exactly how many, seems so long ago), my GA student loans, and fully funded IRAs for last year AND this year so far, with a nice little chunk in savings for emergencies. I’ve never been in better financial shape, considering the future. I mean before, I’d been in less debt, but it was only getting worse, not better. But I never had savings, nor investments.

I can remember before I came here, thinking in about 6 months I could get my own place and just sort of get by, taking forever to get things paid off (years) but knowing it would eventually happen. Your life can get totally fucked up but it doesn’t have to stay that way. I’ve changed a lot mentally, too. Some things maybe not for the best, but most are. I don’t know that it will ever make up for all I lost, but maybe it was a necessary lesson. Moving forward, I have a hell of a lot going for me. I think of the future, and I don’t know where it’s headed, but I don’t see that as any sort of worrisome thing, as compared to not feeling a bright future coming on those short six months ago…

Boy oh boy…

Tuesday, May 6th, 2003

Is it ever going nuts around here! The call has gone out for people for work in Iraq. It’s not part of the current contract I am on but with other sides of the house / other companies. Given the pay difference and some of the silly bullshit going on here, several people have already left, and it really only started around the beginning of this week.

It’s kind of a dilemma for me: there’s more to this place than “just some other country” to me. I’d let my Russian go to crap, and am just now getting it back. It’s a slow process overall but I feel like it’s accelerating a bit. I’d feel bad about dropping it again. On the other hand, the pay sounds truly obscene. I have to keep in mind the main goal ($$) but at the same time there are secondary goals as well. How much importance should be placed on them? At what point does the main goal advance fast enough to throw the secondary goal away? Thinking about this, could I go with the main goal, and have some way to somehow get back here after? I wonder what it will be like as people leave in great big jolly batches — will not directly affect me workwise, since I am my own department but newly found friends are all thinking of their futures.

Too much to think about. It would have been easier never knowing. Smile Who knows, maybe there are no positions. We’ll see. Then the decision comes…

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