Tuesday, May 03, 2005

In the Sandbox...

Ready for Anything...

"So I’m thinking of New York when someone comes a knockin’ on my door. “Hey, we have to be up at the company at 1700 for a company picture.” More insanity. Didn’t we come here to fight dammit. I want to fight. Give me a fight. I need it. Lord, once I’m in that fight, deliver me from it. A constant battle with myself. Wanting a fight, but wary of the chaos that usually ensues. Knock Knock. Come on in, I know you’re going to anyway. It’s Sgt. W. “Hey, you guys need to be up at the company at 1645 for a formation. We’re getting a company picture.” Really, I didn’t know. I could have sworn someone barged in here two minutes ago to tell us the same thing. Now it’s 15 minutes earlier. 15 more minutes of standing in the heat with all our gear on. 15 more minutes of mindless nothingness. 15 minutes that could be spent hunting terrorists. I joined the Army to fight, for my country, my family, freedom, for the people in those twin giants, the whole apple pie Norman Rockwell thing, not all this other crap. Waiting and waiting, when we could get there at 1700 and have plenty of time to wait around. It’s already 105 degrees outside in the shade. I have to prep a Bradley at 1900 for a mission at 2000, and now I have to stand around outside and wait for a company picture. Yee Haw.

I’m not complaining about the mission. Far from it. The missions are what drives me. Without them I’m trapped in my own personal episode of the Twilight Zone. Outside these gates’ lies my promised land. The land of opportunity, mystery, danger, exhilaration, sadness, happiness, joy, fun, misery, chaos, death, experience, life. You can be looking at the face of the devil, turn around, and witness God incarnate in some kid’s smile. You’re not truly living unless you’re outside these gates. Those gates may lead to hell, but they also lead to a little piece of heaven as well...
...Sure it may be a little dangerous, but so is sitting idle, rotting into oblivion. Out there you can be somebody; soldier, friend, brother, photographer, humanitarian, lawman, writer, rock star, traffic cop, celebrity, guardian, prey, predator, savior. You can be some child’s hero, a terrorist’s executioner, or a legend. Outside the gates, anything is possible. Inside these gates, company pictures. Company pictures will kill me quicker than an RPG.

(Another slice of incredible writing by ALa's favorite milblogger: Michael @ A Day in Iraq. When you stop by to read the rest of this post ('Company Pictures'), be sure to say Congratulations! Mike's wife recently gave birth to a baby boy stateside.)

(*All of today's Sandbox pics were handpicked by AB*)

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