Wednesday, July 12, 2006
This morning started out eventfully with a VIP visit. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld stopped by our base to give a short motivational speech and answer questions. I was one of a select few (few hundred, that is!) to have a seat for the occasion, but I was so far back that none of my pictures turned out. So I borrowed one from someone in the front row! I was there, honest. Didn't get closer than about ten feet from him, though, thanks to the white-vested security detail guys. I'm sure they were having fits being in a room with seven hundred people all carrying weapons. Look at the face of the man to the left of the picture! Anyway, it was a good speech, talking a lot about how much we're doing, and that we're making history. He invoked the history of restoring Japan and Germany after WWII, and how long that process took (and how there were naysayers in our country even then). I was expecting more of a "political" speech, but he really just gave a lot of motivational phrases that I think were great for the troops. He spoke for a very short time and then took several questions, answering all but one in detail. The one he declined to answer was the last, where a Nebraska National Guardsman asked him who he thought would win the Army-Navy game this year. Heh. After that we all stood around for about 20 minutes while he shook hands and posed for pictures with a lot of people who weren't me, and then he left to go do other interesting things in Iraq. As for me, I spent the rest of the day doing very uninteresting bean counting, and having fits over typos in trying to correlate serial numbers. It would be fine if they were all uniquely different, but when you're dealing with equipment straight from the manufacturer, the serial numbers are all sequential, so they all look very much alike. My eyes hurt.