Monday, August 16, 2010

Sandbag Detail

Holding the rank of a lower enlisted man in his majesty's army, I am entitled to a few certain priviledges not privy to the higher ranks. Such as filling a Humvee trailer and bed with sandbags (about 200 a trip, 2 trips) and reinforcing the outside of a concrete bunker. We got 5 Afghan locals to fill up the bags and me and a comrade had the pleasant task of chucking them on the trailer as soon as the blackguards had them filled.
It started a slight drizzle, and the brown devils started using the green bags as articles of clothing. They adorned them as capes, tying the little white string about their necks, one on each foot for waders, and most ridiculous of all, I had 5 heathen pontiffs surrounding me with green plastic mitres affixed atop their heads. They wore them regally with no sign of embarrassment. They waved graciously at American soldiers walking by, blessing them when hearing whistles and catcalls.
Once the swarthy assassins realized they weren't going to be the ones loading and unloading the bags, they made sure to fill the bags as full as possible, then pat them down with the shovel and shove a bit more in. They even scooped stray rocks lying around into the bulging green bags, a-chattering and cooing in their unintelligible heathen tongues, feigning ignorance at our precise King's Diction. We told them in plainest terms available to us mean and simple soldiers to please limit the gravel input to no more than 49%, and that any more would betray our Christian integrity in calling these profane things "sandbags".
They nodded excitedly and "salaam"-ed me and carried on with their shovel fulls of geology.
Other than that little diversion, it's been exceedingly dull. I am comforted with the idea of soon having a dozen Appalachicola oysters on the half shell and a bottle of ale to try to lift my spirits. They are stubborn things, my spirits. If one bottle won't answer, then two will. Three will be too many, and then four won't be enough.

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