Tuesday, June 12, 2012

1 Month in Afghanistan - in pictures
 When I left for training a month in a half ago to Camp Bullis in TX I had no clue that I would end up here at the US Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan.  I feel so fortunate to step out of my everyday Weather Officer duties to be here working as a Donor Coordinator with the Department of state.  I have been nervous - exited since I got here, but finally sitting down to reflect on a month in Afghanistan, I feel like I am more well rounded for getting to experience this.  Of course I miss home in Hawaii and family in Idaho, but most of all it is Kevin's 40th birthday today and I miss him the most.  I told him I have to do something to mark each month so I only have to do it 11 times until I am home.  Well here goes:

Me shooting the M9 and M4 in training at Camp Bullis
My tent maits for 2 weeks, the two in the middle also came here to Kabul, so it is nice seeing there faces, like we have a connection.
I flew out of Baltimore and landed in Manas Kyrgyzstan after flying all night and all day through Germany and Turkey.  I was layed over here for a couple days and didn't mind it because I got to adjust to the time change.
I flew from there into Kandahar and then to Bahgram where I stayed a night waiting for a flight into Kabul the next day.
 I have met people from all over the world, Holly was from New Zealand so I was excited to talk to her because Kevin and I are meeting up for my mid tour there in Jan for 15 days, I can't wait.

I finally arrived in Kabul on the 16th of May and drove through the streets on my way to the Embassy.  Ladies in Berkas and a bike rider.

It was hard at first to adjust to the altitude here but I love living at 6,000 ft.  The mountains in the distance remain snow capped throughout the year at 15,000 ft.  The mornings and evening always stay cool here even in the summer.  My favorite thing to do is running in the morning and crossfit at lunch.

 I just started cross fit as soon as I got here and had only been doing it for two weeks when they had a competition.  My awesome partner and I got third, and I learned alot and got more excited to do 40 pull ups like her.

This is one of the judges that I was so impressed with.
 I get to go outside the compound with a guard at least once a week.  I was nervouse at first but now I look forward to it because you meet so many interesting people and see different locations in Kabul that are actually beautiful.
 Like our meeting at UNAMA they had peacocks in the yard with roses all over.
 One afternoon I got to eat lunch with "Awesome Afghan Women" and we had Lebanese food, it was yummy.

 By far breakfast is my favorite here, I can't believe they have fresh fruit every morning and omeletts made to order.

 Most of all I feels so fortunate because most people share rooms, and since I am staying a year and get plush accomadations here at the Embassy, I get my own room, bathroom, TV, computer, fridge, and microwave.

So for next month:  I already started swimming at the 20m pool here, which is amazing because I am a fish out of water and missing Hawaii, and I am starting to teach a spin class and core - stretch class to keep me busy.  I love the routine of this place, you can really sleep 8 hours every night, eat good, and workout as much as you want.  I can't complain.  Miss you all!