Hello and welcome to my blog. It is a blog about an Air Force Physician that was reluctantly deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan for 6 months.

I have to admit, I did not exactly volunteer for the deployment, and I was a little anxious about how it would all turn out. I ended up making the best of it, and surprisingly, I actually had a pleasant, life changing, experience.

I decided to keep the blog up and running because I kept on hearing, "Why is it that you only hear the bad news coming from Iraq and Afghanistan." I figured that I was helping spread a positive message about what we are doing over. Even more important, I wanted to continue to spread the word about the plight of the Afghan people, 99.9% of which are the most incredibly friendly people that you will ever meet. The title picture is a great example of that. I have never encountered such genuinely warm and friendly people. It was so strange to see so many people with so little material objects, yet at the same time, filled with so much of the joy that comes with close family ties, abundant friends, and a close knit community. We could definetly learn a lot from them.

You may notice, as you read the blog in its entirety, my arc. I shift from focusing on myself and my personal comforts, to shifting my focus on the Afghan cause. It is very easy to get distracted by the hustle of daily life and the comforts that the U.S. provides. It is really a challenge to awake from that coma and to start to care and think about the welfare of other people unrelated to you. I think it really took me about 4 or 5 months before I really opened my eyes and became personally affected by what I was experiencing. I hope I was able to recreate it.

I have tried to keep the blog squeaky clean so as to not offend anyone (or get me in trouble-I am still in the military). Even though I am a political junky with very strong personal opinions I have been steadfast in keeping this site free of any politics. I was called to do a job and I tried to do it to the best of my ability regardless of my political stance.

I recreated the blog to read more like a book, or should I say blook (get used to the corniness it only gets worse from here) just to make it an easier read. I have removed some names and pictures just to keep it more anonymous. I hope that it helps in making it less about me and more about the cause.

Lastly, in the spirit of the blog, I decided to include the Chipin Widget that I used to raise money for Nazia. If I get any additional money I will send the funds to The Women of Hope Project and someone over in Kabul will discretely give it to her (unless I hear otherwise). You can also contribute directly to the Women of Hope Project website. They are a wonderful cause. If you enjoy this blog then feel free to contribute. I am sure that once you read her story you will be very moved.

So kick back. Get ready to hopefully laugh and definitely cry.
If you like what you read then post a comment. I will be continuously editing this site in an attempt to improve it. Who knows maybe one day it will become a book!

Enjoy. Thanks for reading.


Today Show Clip

Chipin Widget

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Five-Hundred Pound Barbell in a Steroid-Free Fitness Center

"If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian."
-Paul McCartney

"Troubles are usually brooms and shovels that smooth the road to the good man's fortune; and many a man curses the rain that falls upon his head, and knows not that it brings abundance to drive away hunger."

"Delores breezed along the surface of her life like a flat stone forever skipping along smooth water, rippling reality sporadically but oblivious to it consistently, until she finally lost momentum, sank, and due to an over- dose of fluoride as a child which caused her to suffer from chronic apathy, doomed herself to lie forever on the floor of her life as useless as an appendix and as lonely as a five-hundred pound barbell in a steroid-free fitness center."
-Winning sentence, 1990 Bulwer-Lytton bad fiction contest.

"The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity."
-Harlan EllisonUS science fiction author & screenwriter (1934 - )

"Storms make oaks take deeper root."
-George HerbertEnglish clergyman & metaphysical poet (1593 - 1633)

"The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts working the moment you get up in the morning and does not stop until you get into the office."
-Robert FrostUS poet (1874 - 1963)
I added some more pictures to the slideshow. The folks that attended the last VCR took some really good pictures. They were really able to capture the desperate conditions that the people live in. It is import to take into consideration how cold it is. Some of those little kids are barely dressed. I can not imagine how they do it. They also do not have any running water so it is not like they can hop in a shower and clean up.
Today part of our team visited a slaughter house. It is where the hospital gets its meat.
LtCol Peters said that they had just butchered a lamb so steam was coming from the meat because it was still warm.
The clinic was business as usual. I spent about an hour with the Ortho doctor drinking chai and discussing business. He has a lot of pull in the hospital so it was a very productive meeting.
In the ER a patient was brought in that was sobbing uncontrollably. He was also writhing from his belly pain. The ER doctor said that he had just been poisoned. That was about the only interesting patient that came in. We are still on baby watch.
Take care.

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