7.28.2010

The Countdown Has Begun

I received this e-mail from Matt early Monday morning, about twelve hours after his arrival into Iraq.

"Exiting the ramp of the C-130, my boots hit the dusty tarmac at BIAP (Baghdad International Airport) at approx 09:00 this morning. The weather is hot - like standing in front of a smelting furnace hot. Donned body armor and helmet for my individual motorcade down "Route Irish" to the Embassy compound. The compound resembles a prison with a series of nondescript beige buildings separated by dirt fields where grass may someday be planted. Nevertheless, it offers all of the creature comforts with a huge dining facility (DFAC) and several little snack (Grab & Go) shops - all free. There is a Pizza Hut and Subway as well. The compound has a rec center, complete with gym and swimming pool. We are completely self-sufficient with our own water treatment plant, fire station, and emergency ambulances. My newly furnished apartment looks directly over the Tigris river."

So far he's doing well. He says his apartment and roommate are both quite nice ... with newly upgraded furniture, hard wired internet, a US phone number, an iPod docking station / alarm clock, and flat screen TV.

The compound also has two gyms, a swimming pool, and more food than you could possibly imagine available 24/7. So aside from working, people spend the rest of their time doing one of two things ... working out or eating. And leaves Matt coming home one of two ways ... hunky or chunky. You know which one I'm rooting for.

Many people have asked how I'm doing. The truth is ... it doesn't feel any different right now. For the most part. Remember, for the past 7 years I've spent the summers in California at either his parent's house or mine without him. Since we're not in our own house yet, and we don't have our own stuff yet, it just feels like an extended summer break. However, I'm quite certain that once we move into our rental house, and a few days here and there, it will hit me that he's in Baghdad. For the year. Don't get me wrong, I miss him. Terribly. The kids miss him. The dog misses him... But we're holding our own.

Three days down ... and the countdown has begun.

16 comments:

DelhiBound said...

Thx for sharing a "what it's like" (although I know we'll never KNOW what it's like) ... like that they have apartments and a roommate ... funky!

Hysterical re: the hunky vs chunky!

Crystal said...

I am counting down my days left in the desert of Kuwait! I will be counting with you and Matt : ) I will also be cheering for you both from afar!! You can do, you are going to do it and may you be stornger for it ~

Mom24 said...

At least now that the countdown has begun it can start to end.

Best of luck.

Fascinating to hear what it's like there. So a US phone number, I assume that means you'll at least be able to talk frequently??

A Daring Adventure said...

Oh, good! I'm glad to hear that the apartment/roommate are both nice (that can totally make it or break it, right?!) and that he's got some wonderful things (internet/US phone number) that are bound to be a big help in the time away. Yay!

Have fun at BlogHer! I'm so glad to hear that you're going and that you'll have a ton of girlfriends there to lift your spirits!

Bfiles said...

i have been thinking of you, so glad he arrived safely and seems to have good internet so you can be in touch. Even better that you are not feeling his absence too keenly just yet. Before you know it, the first 3 mos will be done and you'll be seeing him. Take care and have a wonderful time at blogher - I will be waving at you from NYC!

Camille said...

Great! SO glad to hear that he settled in safe and sound and even has a Subway :) You guys are fantastic, I love reading your blog - Have a great time at BlogHer!

The Bald Guy said...

Whoa! Pizza Hut! Subway! Nice! :-)

Christy said...

Wow - glad he's doing okay and has a relatively decent place to call home for the year. And so glad you're still holding your own! Can't wait to see you -- next Friday!!!

Lisa said...

I love that you're counting down. Jill, you are such a strong lady! I'm also glad his digs are as good as they are. He deserves it!
3 down - yippee!

陳曉薇陳曉薇 said...

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melissa said...

i just stumbled upon your blog...through facebook maybe?
sounds like your husband is in a really cool place! good luck to you!

melissa
http://www.rockanddrool.com

American in Norway said...

Hang in there... I hope time will pass fast... THANK GOODNESS for SKYPE.. at least you all an see each other... Hugs!

陳尹v said...

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anymommy said...

May it go quickly and very safely. I bet you all miss him, but glad that he is settled and has some comforts around him.

I am Barking Mad said...

I hope this year flies by for you and that the distance is lessened as each day passes.

Connie said...

So good to read that he has arrived safe, and you are settling in. May the year fly by :)

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