Stories From Iraq

15 07 2008

I ran into an old friend yesterday at the doctor’s office. I know, that’s where we go to socialize. Shut up.

Anyway, I haven’t seen him in about 2 1/2 years and he said he was visiting. I asked where he was these days.

“Baghdad,” he replied.

I didn’t say anything. I honestly didn’t know what to say.

He informed me he was working in the private sector. Then he started to tell Squirrel Queen and I about the Iraqi people.

“Never compliment them on anything because they will give it to you,” he said. “I’ve had this happen several times and they always give me whatever it is I comment about. You have to be careful about that.”

He went on to talk about that it was dangerous and about that many of the Iraqi people he has met thought, due to Saddam Hussein’s reign, that Iraq had been victorious during the Gulf War.

He talked for a long time. I had my foot propped up due to Igor the mean-assed spider biting it and just listened to what he had to say. He also cited that he didn’t think American Main Stream media was getting all of the stories right. I asked what he meant and he said that they only got CNN, Fox and Al Jazeera where he lived. A lot of the soldiers there as well as those living, as he is, in the private sector, thinks there needs to be more educational programming about the tribal factors in the area. He also said that Iraqis were lovely people.

When he left, he said it was a brisk 114 degrees.

I really have no comment on this conversation from a political perspective. It was a private thing between old friends. I do think there is always going to be things that we don’t know or we don’t understand. Cultures are different. I’ll be honest, I was shocked to hear he had taken this path. I just didn’t expect it.

And I also had a moment of blinding jealousy. I would give anything to start a new adventure into areas that I’m desperately afraid of. I know, “Newscoma, DAMMIT, you don’t want to go to Iraq!?!!”

No, not really. I don’t but in a way I do.

My envy came from him talking about the culture, the way people survive despite terrible odds and obstacles. The way that life continues in despair. How he felt he was making a difference?

Yes, for a moment, that’s something I wanted to be swimming in.

Could I make a difference?




4 responses

15 07 2008

If you want an adventure in an area that you are desperately afraid of, clean out that closet where the spider that bit you lives. Just saying, that’s pretty dangerous territory apparently.

15 07 2008

“I ran into an old friend yesterday at the doctor’s office. I know, that’s where we go to socialize. Shut up.”

Can’t shut up. You’re the only person I know who can make me feel young and healthy.

15 07 2008

Thanks Sharon. You are awesome. 🙂

15 07 2008
chez beziat

Assuming there’s good money in it, I’ll follow you on any adventure you can think of.

Nice post.

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