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

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Toxic Pig Brain Mist

Iron rusts from disuse; stagnant water loses its purity and in cold weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind.
Leonardo da Vinci, The NotebooksItalian engineer, painter, & sculptor (1452 - 1519)

Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.
-Anthony J. D'Angelo, The College Blue Book
If I find 10,000 ways something won't work, I haven't failed. I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward.
Thomas A. Edison, Encyclopaedia Britannica US inventor (1847 - 1931)
Have more than thou showest; Speak less than thou knowest.
William Shakespeare, 'King Lear,' Act I, Scene iv Greatest English dramatist & poet (1564 - 1616)

Today the weather changed drastically from mid day to evening. It went from beautiful and sunny to cloudy skys and heavy snow fall.

We helped unload a large container full of medical supplies. We definitely got our work-out for the day.

While we were unloading the supplies we watched some kids have a snowball fight. They had one of the most amazing snowball throwers that I had ever seen. It was 2 ropes attached to a handmade basket for a snowball to sit in. Every time they launched a snowball you would hear a loud crack of the rope. It made the snowball soar.

Muslims will be celebrating another holiday this weekend. It is called Day of Ashura. I linked a Wikapedia article in case you were interested in learning more information. This last week you could detect a noticeable change around the city. Cars had large flags on them and a lot of banners were erected.

I am almost embarrassed at how little I knew about Muslim culture before I came here. I think the more we can learn about each other the more we will get along and prevent prejudices from developing. The more you get to know someone the more you realize that we are essentially all the same.

I do not normally do this because I try and stick to Afghan related topics, but I found an ABC News story so funny that I had to share it. The title of the article is, "More Sick From Toxic Pig Brain Mist." Here is a link. The comments on the article are also pretty funny. I can say with confidence that toxic pig brain mist will never be a problem in Afghanistan because Muslims are not allowed to consume pork. As a matter of fact, we make sure that we do not give out any stuffed toy pigs to any of the children. We try and respect and be sensitive towards their religious and cultural beliefs.

Thanks for reading.

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