My last night at camp I was treated to a cigar by the cigar club. It was really nice. I only made two inappropriate comments. I won't embarrass myself or worse embarrass the Marines I was sitting with that had invited me to join them. I know I may have given them a second thought or two.
I was also invited to dinner with the interpreters. It was very nice. They made a traditional chicken dinner in their hootch for me. I was very impressed. Of course while talking it was revealed that I was the oldest person in the room. They are all college educated and want to get to the US.
I have just completed the first leg of my journey home. I thought that I might be bored and lonely but I have already met some great guys and one female Marine. The interesting thing about meeting Marines is that all the men introduce themselves by their last name, but the women introduce themselves by their first name.
It is a bit melancholy for me heading home and leaving a great group of men. I was very impressed not only with them personally, but what they are attempting to accomplish and accomplishing. We all realize it is one step forward and may be a few steps backward with the ANA and withdrawing from Afghanistan, but it has begun and it is impressive and exciting.