Yesterday was the ramp ceremony for an MTF digger, Corporal Richard Atkinson who died last week from an IED. We along with Americans, Slovaks, Dutch, and others helped the MTF line the route to the awaiting RAAF Hercules. The procession was lead by a chaplain and the casket was carried in the back of an Aslav As Richard Atkinson’s body rolled pass we came to attention and threw a salute. Following the casket was a slow marching party made up of representatives of other militaries and government organisations. I noticed two Afghani soldiers in the group walking with very little purpose, as if they didn’t want to be there. When thousands of their own are killed each year, I suppose so much effort for one loss might seem excessive.
I’ve been back in TK for a couple of weeks now and I’m stilling missing the perks of KAF. At breakfast in KAF there was a guy who made to order fresh omelettes. On my first visit I went with the lot and then every visit there after he remembered my “regular”. I wanted to mix it up and try different combinations of fillings but I didn’t want to offend the guy so I tried to disguise myself by wearing different clothes and shaving my distinctive moe (which I was glad to get rid of anyway, ladies in the gym replied to my friendly smiles with screwed up faces and I was only growing my moe out of spite to my TK boss anyway). The rouse worked and from that day onwards I enjoyed eggs with cheese everyday.
Winter has painted the top of the surrounding mountains and recent rain has caught all the airborne dust creating some beautiful scenery. On the flight back to TK I got a window seat and enjoyed watching the rippled mountains flow beneath me.
My experiences here aren’t very wary. Yesterday for instance, I spent the day making a tortoise enclosure for Cracker (the tortoise with a cracked shell) and Jimmy (the tortoise next to the tortoise with a cracked shell). Today I buried one of the baby tortoises (Speedy who died from complications resulting from falling off a table, I named the tortoise enclosure camp Speedy in his honour) and went to town on an excel spreadsheet. I managed a few radio checks but at least in KAF we get rocket attacks, I’m missing the action and coffee.