Monday, July 17, 2006


Ok so some of the kids aren't as great as the others but don't trust the older ones...

Yesterday was I guess my first encounter with the "bad ones". We went to a school with about 1000 students. We didn't go to take supplies (I guess that was the mistake) we went to look at what they needed to improve the school (bigger classrooms more desks as you can see in the pictures) we walked around the school most of the kids spoke English very well. I met one kid who was 19 and wanted to become a computer engineer in the states. The thing is the chance of him doing that are honestly slim to none because the school is mainly a school for refugees and foster kids.

Here is the some might say exciting part:
We are leaving the gate of the school and about 400 kids are outside with us no adults no teachers just about 400 15-20 year old kids. We have 4 upamored humvees and one of our little Ford pickups and one of the humvees has a trailer of school supplies for a school more deserving.. I get about 4 steps outside the gate and the trailer gets swarmed like a pack of wolves on a pound of raw meat. We start pulling the kids off and pushing them back, we have 20 or so guys and then the 400 kids wonderful!!! We get them off without loosing too much and then we leave, as were leaving we have to drive about a quarter of a mile through an alley as we get about half way down the alley the kids start throwing rocks. We have an Afghan Army Major with us, he pulls his belt (by the way they're not scared of our rifles they're scared of sticks, rocks, knives, and belts) he starts smackin the brats with it and they start to give in some. I have my window down, so I think "Todd putt up your window or something is gonna happen" no more than I put my hand back on the steering wheel a rock the size of my fist hits the window. Wow first time I've been ticked at these people.. So we finally get out of there and on to the next school.. That was already enough for the day...

The next school was a lot better help from the teachers and the kids listened. This was an elementary school with about 4000 kids.. The kids attend school in tents it really honestly looks like the commercials for feed the children really miserable. We handed out more stuff than we could count about 30 large boxes of supplies.

The boys went first of course... They were good I caught one little boy going through the line about 3 times so I made sure it was his last. Some kids like the other school just take advantage kinda like some do back in the states but there are so many who need it and take it without begging for more and more. I usually try to stand to the side and look for the shy or not so hellious as the others and give them what I have. After awhile some of the boxes were empty and I found a box full of Barbie and Aladdin pencils so I grabbed the box and took it upon myself to give them out to the girls who were standing and watching. They were a little pushy but after a little dari they knew what I meant. (yak "one" nay "no" burro "go") So again I took it upon myself to get the girls over in the line to get what they needed. I don't think the male teachers liked my idea as much as I did or the other guys so they took them back about 3 times until our interp stepped in and got the job done. I took the picture (the first one you see at the top of this blog) you can see the girl turning her head while the other girl smiles big. She turned away because of the male thing how they're made to do. She shook her head at me and walked away.. Could you image how that would be, she is 13 and married by the way, what a country huh!!!

So another eventful day in Afghanistan!! Oh by the way we cut the first school off until they get there attitude fixed.. We wouldn't have done that but the principle stood by while all of that went on. Until then they will have to deal with the problems the school faces.. One of our guys got hit in the face and back of the head from rocks. One of the rocks would have hit his eye if it weren't for his sunglasses...

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Well its getting hotter and the wind is picking up they call it the 120 day wind and its the truth.

We have been really busy here lately hence the lack of blogs. This past weekend we went to a Infectious Disease Hospital (the bird flu is alive and well in Afghanistan). We handed out about 4 thousand dollars of medical equipment we purchased from a downtown pharmacy. The hospital is lacking in US standards. They use tents to treat incoming patients and that tent may be were they stay depending on the severity of the disease.

When we pulled up to a hospital a little girl was sitting and waiting with her mother at the entrance. She was so timid and scared of me as I watched her peek around the corner of the bench and smile and jerk back. I had a pocket full of twizlers so I used them as bait so she wouldn't be so scared of us. After about 10-12 twizlers later she would run up and ask for more unlike the boys they'll take it without asking. I really feel sorry for the girls not sure if its the soft spot having a daddys girl or what but they have really had it rough and are still fighting for their rights.

We unloaded everything and left I got a little waive and a quick duck back under the bench but maybe I warmed her up not to be scared of us soldiers.

Today was another trip to the school were building. Checking on the progress they are coming along very well and now we are gonna see what we can do to look into some donations of playground equipment (please let me know if you have any ideas) we will pay for shipping just looking for a school or community that has some to give up. Took a few pictures of kids with flags always a great picture. Then I made the mistake of handing stuff out in a crowd of kids not really the best thing to do.

We have finally made it to an office so maybe I can keep this thing up to date more than I do. Im glad ya'll like reading this. If I can't tell you face to face I hope you know how proud it makes me feel to get the boxes from home full of stuff for the kids you guys are great so thank you for what you do and I know you're doing it for us but the kids are just grateful to get it period......

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Backpacks and Kids

Well its been a few days and the last few have been really busy. On Sunday we loaded our Ford Rangers with backpacks full of school suplies for kids at 2 kindergartens. After a ride through down town Kabul (Grand Theft Auto: Kabul) we got to the first school and were greated with smiles and hugs. This was the first time I have seen women working and they seemed to be doing a great job. We handed out around 50 bags and had a meeting with the director of the school. After awhile in the meeting I wondered around the school just watching the kids and missing Bayleigh more and more as I watched the kids play and work. I handed out candy to the kids and recieved a well spoken "thank you". And for the first time snapped a picture of the little girls who usually run away from us. When I went back to the meeting the teachers brought us lunch was very good (I dont think the Afghans know how to cook a bad meal) and come to find out the teachers put their money together to buy and fix lunch. They don't really have 2 dimes to rub together but they fixed us lunch just to show us how much they appreciate us.

Our next school was just the same they were so happy to see us and so happy for us to give what they dont have. I went into a back room (the nap room) and saw a little boy with bright red hair and too many freckles to count, too cute.

Yesterday we finally moved into our perminant barracks and its pretty comfy like a little apartment microwave, fridge, coffee pot, and my single burner I brought from home. Its nice to get settled in and unpack everything its tough living out of a duffel bag and not being able to find anything.

And today we went down to Camp Warehouse a camp with lots of foreign armies Germany, Italy, France (frechie) and several others. Im getting pretty good at the driving and actually having fun doing it (a little scared at first) but you see so much and everybody wants to wave and see the Americans. After a meeting there we moved on to KMTC (Kabul Military Training Center) its were they train the ANA (Afghan National Army). What a Fourth of July huh oh and tonight we get ice cream and bbq chicken. Not sure if I would rather be at home or here. ; )

It's nice though helping out another country and serving in the military and celebrating our independince all at the same time. So while your having your picnics and days at the beach or what ever your doing back home remember us and what we're doing and who we're doing it for. Happy 4th Everyone