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Westward Bound

Tuesday, June 8th, 2004

Looks like I am on track to get out of here. Heading to Tashkent Thursday, and Saturday I fly to Frankfurt and then on to Kuwait City. I’m not sure if we just MILAIR out of there or there are intermediate steps. I’ll be going to work up in northern Iraq, at the Mosul airbase. I will document as I can, but it may take time to get anything written up and posted, much less any pics.

Irony, Managerial Stupidity, and You

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2004

People are deserting this place in droves for better pastures. One of the guys was asked by the Project Manager why he was leaving. Obviously, he gave a placating answer. But the question that should be asked, is why would you stay?

Let’s take time off as an example. There will be irony involved, and it will be good. As it stands now we are not allowed to take LWOP, or Leave WithOut Pay. This is the entity formerly known as MWR, which was a 3 day timeout in Tashkent. This was later extended to 4 days, but turned off altogether only two months later. What that means is that you get your time off once every four months. (more…)

Ordinary Life

Sunday, January 18th, 2004
Pay the bills, watch TV, day in, day out the same routine
Mow the grass, fix the leak, just to fix it again
We go to church, go to work, so picture perfect that it hurts
I feel like I’m trapped inside this ordinary life

I was just sitting here listening to Chad Brock’s “Ordinary Life.” For those of you who don’t know the song, it starts out with the husband leaving his family because he wanted more than the ordinary, everyday type of life. Later it has family carrying on with their ordinary life, and he calls back yet again missing his ordinary life.

You know what? I never wanted to do this. I simply wanted to do the whole American dream thing. I felt I was making decent progress, but it suddenly fell apart. All I ever wanted was to be some ordinary average person, just like everyone else. I wanted to be loved. Wife, family, a little house just big enough, grass I have to mow all too often. Let’s throw in a vehicle or two that isn’t fancy but generally works. Just another day in paradise. So close.

But instead here I am in Uzbekistan? How the fuck does that happen? Now I get to be world traveller, with more money than I thought I’d ever have. I can do whatever I want. I don’t have much in the way of freedom here in Karshi, but I’m looking for something to change that. I may have the opportunity to go to Kuwait for a spell before coming back here and wandering Afghanistan migrating some servers. Of course, Evil Dwarf may get in the way of that, that micromanaging shithead, but we’re trying to work around him. More places on the list to say “yeah, I been there” I guess.

It works out that I can’t have my dream while I am here. Maybe I can see other dreams but they all have attendant problems, more so than the old dream. I wonder after a few more years, what will I want then? I certainly don’t want to live this life forever, where I look back and find I have nothing to show for the unconventional choice. I think a lot of these guys go back to their families, try to remember who everyone is, and get frustrated and leave again. Of course, there’s a threshhold of years before that happens, but it’s easy to see what I don’t want to do, even if I don’t know what I do want.

Definitely I need to move out from the prison camp to have any idea of these things. I think you can put up with it for a year, but after that it just wears too much. I’m looking for something in Tashkent, maybe one of the other NIS republics, or even Mother Russia herself. Making the network of contacts is the difficult part.

It’s also like another song:

…you don’t have to go home
but you can’t stay here.

Speaking of Closing Time, I guess this here post is over.


Wednesday, December 17th, 2003

Headed out on R&R again, stateside this time. Ran out of time to finish the last writeups. Sad Oh well. It will still happen.

Quick Itinerary:
17-20 Dec Tashkent
20 Dec late afternoon Denver
2 Jan-7 Jan Tashkent again, plus a whoooole lot of travel

Blah. See yall soon! Very Happy

More Random Stuff (Now, Improved With Picture!)

Wednesday, October 1st, 2003

I’m so lazy. I didn’t get anything done, and tomorrow I leave for Tashkent for a few days. Been really busy with wiring and connecting the new Bullpen in our construction project for the trades guys to work out of. So much to do, and so little planned properly. At least my wireless stuff came in so I can get started on that.

Some of the locals complained about getting shot at while working, so we put up a sign.


I was talking to some of the kids from the warehouse the other day. I’ve been messing with them for a long time. It’s my plan to make them think I am totally crazy. I am not sure I have them totally fooled. Then every so often I give them a peek at the real me. Of course, my backup plan is for them to think it’s all an act so then when I do act bizarrely, they don’t think it’s real. I win either way! Whoohoo! Go me! Twisted Evil

Oh yeah, anyways. I was talking to Lena and she kept laughing because I speak slowly. Hello, not my native language! I take the extra time to think about my words because I have to think about each thing I need to say, and want to do it correctly. 5 minutes earlier when she was trying to get me to say I hate Commo Jack she’d misunderstood me. She didn’t hear me say “Ya Ne Nenavizhyu Evo” which is “I don’t hate him” and dropped the first “ne”, which is of course the “don’t” part. But even when I lose I win, so I pouted and made her feel bad today like she hurt my feelings. She didn’t, though I did find it strange, to be sure. It didn’t strike me that funny. It was complicated enough saying we worked together and weren’t best buddies but I had nothing against him, and trying to be clear on the meaning. BAH! Foreigners! (Gotta love ’em, that is!) They made me talk too much yesterday — it’s weird when you are trying to explain something to them, but maybe don’t know a word, so you explain the concept and try to use analogies…and 10 minutes later they come back with the word you’ve been asking about all along. “Is the word for soandso thisorthat?” 10 minutes of conversation later, “Oh, you mean thisorthat!” Had I not been actually saying the correct word repeatedly (and correctly) I would understand. Smile I was asking for the noun form of “to act” or “pritvoryayetcya” which I thought would be “an act” or “pritvoryeniye”. The patterns are there to deduce these, but you never know when they will turn out to be exceptions. It’s only a simple 10 minute question. “I know the goddam verb, what’s the corresponding noun!!!! Is it thishereword?” Life’s funny. Wink

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