I'm home and it's as quiet and wierd as I thought it would be.
In Dubai I met Matt from Albuquerque, my home town where this all began with my first hero, Ernie Pyle. He also knew of him and told me his own stories of war.
My last night in Afghanistan I had the pleasure of meeting Maryel Nixon and Mary Graham, both Army Specialists and both from San Diego. Two angels that caught my attention as they walk, sing and chatter like the teenagers they are. Recruited from highschool, Mary only 17, with the temtation of a tunarific special from Subway, which they never got.
I could not help but think of my two daughters and wonder what their thoughts were and explicitly how they dealt with the idea of death...true to innocence, they are ready for it. They believe, just as it should be for a troop, that dying for our country is honorable. True to the creed that soldiers and combatants both civilan and military have a callousness about life. They have the unfortuante capcity of the human race to suspend the normal revulsion to death.
As I listen to the news in my now posh (in comparison to where I've been) living room I hear with concern about the deaths of civilians in southern Afghanistan from IED's. These are the devil stones of this country that will be maiming and killing for generations to come.
I will be posting some photos later. I took both digital and film, yes film...I felt the need to connect to my two heros of the past...hopefully I won't be disappointed with what images actually come through.
Afghanistan...I cannot wait to return.