Wednesday, June 29, 2005

And Joy is Everywhere;
It is in the Earth's green covering of grass;
In the blue serenity of the Sky;
In the reckless exuberance of Spring;
In the severe abstinence of gray Winter;
In the Living flesh that animates our bodily frame;
In the perfect poise of the Human figure, noble and upright;
In Living;
In the exercise of all our powers;
In the acquisition of Knowledge;
In fighting evils...
Joy is there Everywhere.
Rabindranath Tagore

The Doctor is psychiatric evaluations today!

I’m sorry about the last few entries in the blog being so morbid. I don’t want you all to think that I’m going crazy here in Germany. I sometimes feel down, and I sometimes feel wasted. I’m doing ok. I would say that I’m fine, but Marla Higginbotham always said, “Fine means freaked out, insecure, neurotic, and emotional…” So I say that I am ok. I’ve been better, I’ve been worse, and I’ve been in worse shape. However, my back is finally feeling great (I’ve been in physical therapy, and getting treatment from doctors for almost eighteen months) and that is a load off of my whole attitude.
You are right Tom-it is great when you have a support structure that you can depend on. A family that holds you up, but, as you said, its even better when you can hand it off to the Lord. I’ve noticed a lot more people are leaving comments, and I enjoy reading them. Its good to know that someone out there is listening and still loves me.
I am a little sad that I do not get to go to my cousins wedding in California, but I had an opportunity to meet her husband to be, and I am confident that she is in good hands. My family, however, is going to need some help. So all of you out in California, remember to tell them that if they don’t behave there are plenty of group hugs waiting (it’ll scare the crap out of them-and make them behave!).
I have to close for now-but I will return in a few days to add some more.

Love and Prayers-

Monday, June 27, 2005

Someone once said that anything worth being said was already said by someone else, and they did a better job of it. I'm not too sure of the latter, but i guess i can agree with the former. most of what i have learned, i learned from the wisdom of others-i would like to thank my grandparents, parents, and (grudgingly) my sisters. I have already learned so much, and I know that i have much to learn. So-to quote the fab four, as they already said it better-

When I find myself in times of trouble
Mother mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
And in my hour of darkness
She is standing right in front of me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.
And when the broken hearted people
Living in the world agree,
There will be an answer, let it be.

For though they may be parted there is
Still a chance that they will see
There will be an answer, let it be.
Let it be, let it be. yeah
There will be an answer, let it be.

And when the night is cloudy,
There is still a light that shines on me,
Shine on until tomorrow, let it be.
I wake up to the sound of music
Mother mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be. oh, let it be, yeah, let it be.
There will be an answer, Let it be.
let it be.Let it be, let it be,Let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Yesterday, September 11. 2001...

"Yesterday, December 7, 1941 -- a date which will live in infamy -- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by the naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan. The United States was at peace with that Nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its Government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific." Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Why is it a date that will live in Infamy? Was it because of the actions of the Japanese? The betrayal? Or was it the actions of the average, everyday American?
"No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory. I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us." FDR
The greatest fear of Admiral Yamamoto was that all he did was awake a sleeping giant. Indeed, we did see complete victory in the pacific, but also against the threat of the Nazi forces in Europe. Why? Superior technology? No...Superior resolve. The American people, the young men and women of the greatest generation, rose to the challenge of fighting a war on two fronts. Victory gardens were planted, steel was rationed, GM and Ford turned their assembly lines around in historic speed to produce, not automobiles, military vehicles with great speed. Rosie the riveter joined the working force, and produced the vehicles and munitions greatly needed by the soldiers in the Pacific and Europe. The economic powerhouse of America, disabled and disgraced by the Great Depression, once again reared its massive head and began working to victory. News organizations began to bring the stories of success and failure back to the people. However, their focus was not on the failure, which there were many to report, but on the success of the soldiers. Has our news organizations failed us? I don’t think failure is the right word, disappointed is more accurate. I have been in the cradle of civilization. I have been to Baghdad. Fox news-you disappoint me. Fair and balanced…Not from what I have seen. I expect more.

The Spirit of September 11, 2001, was that of teamwork, brotherhood, bipartisan cooperation. We drew together as a nation. One band, One sound. Then something happened. Casualties. The awful cost of war started to arrive in flag draped caskets. American blood was spilt on American soil, and the American ego demanded justice. Justice was delivered in the form of bombs. Afghanistan was pummeled by the USAF and the Taliban were displaced. Eyes turned south. Saddam Hussain is a criminal. Never should it be forgotten that he used chemical and biological weapons against the Iranians, and HIS OWN PEOPLE.
However, Americans continue to defend this animal. Regardless of whether he continues to posses WMD’s, he has used them. He must be brought to justice. He is a terrorist.

Never-Never forget what has happened. The Nazi’s MURDERED 6 million Jews. Stalin MURDERED 10 million Russians in the bloodiest coup in history.

MURDER IS NEVER OK. And as long as I have breath in my body I will bring criminals of terrorism to justice. The victims of September 11, 2001, and the soldiers who have sacrificed their lives for this country, in the war on terror and in other wars, deserve my sacrifice. SEAN PENN, DANNY GLOVER, BARBARA STREISAND you are traitors to America. In my opinion you should be shot. Soldiers have lost their lives so that you could piss on the flag. I hope I never run into you. I don’t know if I could contain my disgust. There were true patriots in the twin towers. There were true patriots aboard AA11. There were true patriots aboard UA175. There were true patriots that answered the call of their nation and joined the armed forces of the United States. Ironically, I have been unable to find a single true patriot in Hollywood. There are few patriots serving in our media. I walk through airports and I see people that I don’t know. They thank me for my sacrifice, but where is theirs? What have they done to serve? The military is not for everyone. But do you still fly your flag? Do you support the efforts of soldiers all over the world, serving to make America safe to walk the streets. Never forget what happened on September 11, 2001. America was changed forever. I hope you are willing to change with her.

Never forget the sacrifice of patriots.
Never forget the tragedy.
Never Forget.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Life in the fast lane

Just to calm some of the worries of those reading these posts-the Autobahn is designed for high speeds. It is more dangerous to travel slowly than it is to go fast. The lanes are wider, and the traffic is all experienced drivers. I posted some pictures on the blog, sorry that they are so old, I will get some recent ones on the web and get them posted.
life continues to move at an ever increasing pace, and I find myself wishing that I was a little kid again. Life was simple back then...All that I knew was Lego's and the confines of Camelia Ct. I didn't have to worry about the terror alert, the euro-dollar exchange rate, or what dictator in Korea was threatening the world with WMD's. Sometimes it makes me sad to see how corrupt our world has become. Then I ask myself, is it any different than when is was little?
-"the only thing necessary for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing," sir Edmund Burke-
I could pawn off the problems today on the next generation-Hussein, Kim jog IL, china, Syria-the list of horrible leaders goes on and I wonder if our country is any better off...Is bush the right president? Is the war on terror worth the cost? Will there be any benefit to the bloodshed?
I look around me and I see an immense chasm being forged in America-WWII was different-that was the greatest generation..."Never has so much been owed, by so many, to so few," Churchill. Where are the patriots? Where is the love of country? How has the power of the Constitution of the United States been perverted? Was it my fault?
My friends, and complete strangers, look at me differently. I wear the Uniform of our armed forces, I have fought for freedom, and it is a steep cost. I have watched the spirit of liberty leave the body of a fallen comrade-an image that has been burned into my memory, so that I can never forget what the cost of freedom really is...FREEDOM IS NOT FREE.
When did Americans forget the Kennedy calling-
"We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution. Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans--born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage--and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world.
Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
This much we pledge--and more.
To those new states whom we welcome to the ranks of the free, we pledge our word that one form of colonial control shall not have passed away merely to be replaced by a far more iron tyranny. We shall not always expect to find them supporting our view. But we shall always hope to find them strongly supporting their own freedom--and to remember that, in the past, those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger ended up inside.
Can we forge against these enemies a grand and global alliance, North and South, East and West, that can assure a more fruitful life for all mankind? Will you join in that historic effort?
In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility--I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it--and the glow from that fire can truly light the world.
And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you--ask what you can do for your country."

just a few thoughts that have been running through my head.
think about it-do you want to be remembered as the generation that let the fruit of liberty go bad, or the one that pruned the tree of liberty and brought forth more fruit than any generation before...

The Fueler himself Posted by Hello

Roadside chat Posted by Hello

Sunday, June 19, 2005

German pools taste like salt water...

So, today i Got off of CQ (charge of quarters) and my buddy woke me up early(CQ is a 24 hour shift, and you get off at 9am). He asked me if I wanted to go to the waterpark, and I said why not! we got into the car and joined the convoy at the quikie mart. 14 or so of us hopped on the Autobahn and sped up to Nurnburg. The average speed was 108 mph all the way-hey, we all have late model cars, otherwise we would have gone faster. we got to the waterpark without any trouble, suprisingly because none of us really new how to get there. Unfortunately, most of the waterpark was closed for construction-kids under 15 got in free, and the place was overcrowded with a bunch of ankle biters. No matter-they had beer at the concessions stand! we had ourselves a few drinks and went down the waterslides-time and time again, about 8 at a time.
Needless to say, we spent about 5 hours at the waterpark avoiding getting kicked out. It was a blast! Anyway-not much else has happened this weekend. I will write more later-AJ

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The drawbacks to drawdown...

My unit has recieved its drawdown orders, meaning the 3rd brigade combat team is no longer. this means that simple soldiers like me have been displaced, forced to move on to a new location, meet new friends, and find a new home for all of the really crappy equipment that our brigade has a nack for collecting.
That is the problem with my life right now. it is almost like we are gettting ready to deploy again to iraq, meaning the level of attention that is being paid to equipment. These trucks have been in Germany since the Berlin wall was being constructed. GET RID OF THEM. but no the army doesnt know how to throw something away.
November cannot come soon enough-Virginia will be an excellent break from the horrible reality that is my life...

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

the internet is the devil!

since i have recently linked up a broadband connection I have begun to realize how much time can be spent on the internet. its nice to be able to talk to all of my friends in the states, it makes the distance seem a lot smaller. I was online this morning before work talking to Tom and Chris through im. It was really good to actually hear their voices. it has motivated me enough to go get a webcam and microphone so that I can talk to them as well.
Things around here are pretty much the same. we had a change of command ceremony this morning for our company. I was the Guidon bearer. so I was upfront for the whole thing. The army needs to fight wars, otherwise we are lost in the midst of Ceremony after ceremony. the "tinsel and glare" gets a little old. I just dont know if i can stand one more ceremony.
The days keep passing and very soon I will be back in the United States. Back where gas is cheap and the dollar is worth a dollar. The exchange rate today (for those considering a trip to Europe) the euro is 80 cents to the dollar. the best that it has been in a while. time to go out and get some of that high quality German beer.
More later

Monday, June 13, 2005

Same old soldier, new location

I got my orders and I will be moving to Ft Lee, VA before the year is out. it is kind of exciting to be moving yet again. with all of the excitement from a year in Iraq it is a little boring here in the real world. I had some friends over last night and we watched a few movies, and some Will and Grace. it was a really fun time. Its funny how the simple things can be so much more enjoyable.
One of my friends from Basic training is here on my base for some training. I am hoping to run into her, or at least have lunch and catch each other up. it seems like so long ago that I was in Basic training. I have been through a lot since then.
More later...

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Germany Sucks...

This is my first entry on this whole blog thing, but everyone who knows me has asked me to put down some of my thoughts into a blog. So here it is, I just returned to my duty station in Germany after a year in Iraq. Iraq was probably the worst experience of my life, but it is over and I'm getting over it. Being here in Germany just accents how much I enjoy being out of the third world.
Germans on the other hand...They are an interesting group of people. They come off really rude. I just don't really understand what is so difficult about being polite, a little excuse me maybe???

My parents, my sister, and her husband were just out here to Germany. We traveled a little bit. Their journey began in Munich. They went to Dachau and saw the concentration camp that was in that city. I joined them the evening after their trip. It was an interesting trip from the beginning. Until we finally stopped eating traditional German foods, the trip was a little difficult for the visitors to enjoy. German is really hard to guess...Pink Bologna ;) sorry, a little inside humor.
The trip didn't get really fun until we arrived in Berlin. We took a couple of guided tours. We saw the Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie, the Reichstag, the pergamum museum, and a whole lot of other "tourist" sites.
The city of Berlin was a trip!! That city has such an interesting dynamic because of he wall. The City is divided into quarters and is still very divided.

That is all for now....