Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Compound

The base I’m stationed at has to be one of the nicest bases in a war zone that ever existed. 

Currently I’m living in temporary housing which in this case is an RLB or re-locatable building.  No it’s not a trailer or RV or Double wide.  It’s a shipping container, well really a bunch of shipping containers arranged to look like a building.  My room, which is one of the shipping containers, is about what you might expect from a connex box turned into a room. (I think it’s 8’x20’)  Lights, AC, power outlets, two bunk beds, window and a door.  I only have one roommate thankfully and he is pretty cool and we get along well which is nice.  The rooms have two bunk beds but no real storage area so with any more than 2 people it would be a huge mess.  In theory I’ll get a real room (with 2 roommates) in one of the real buildings at some point but for now I’m fairly content.  I think they are going to try and kick me out of my current room and move me to a different RLB so they can rip down the one I’m currently in, I’d like to avoid that but we’ll see.  The temp showers (also in a connex box) leave a bit to be desired but the shower tent on the other hand is rather nice so once I found out about that quality of life improved a little.

The food here is good, well for cafeteria food anyway.  When you add in that you don’t have to pay for it, cook it, or clean up afterwards it’s darn good.  Plus there is a plethora of desserts and even baskin robbins ice cream you can get.  It’s all as much as you want and you can drop in and grab snacks and drinks all day long too. (they do 4 meals a day so if you’re really dedicated, or work the night shift, you can eat at a real meal at midnight)  Mix that with the over abundance of candy and junk food from care packages that is spread around the office and paying attention to how much you eat becomes important.  Good thing they have a nice gym here, now I just need to start using it, details details. 

The office, which I share with a LTC and my boss (a COL) is probably about the same size as my room.  It’s in one of the real building here and it really does feel more or less like an office.  Lots of phones and computers.  Not really anything else exciting about that, it’s an office.  Well we do have a nice calendar.

The little store they have here is a trailer from an 18 wheeler, but they actually have a rather large variety of stuff which is nice, pretty much everything you need to get by even if it isn’t your favorite brand or color, etc.  Plus you can order stuff online and get it in a week or three so anything you really really need you can get.

My current favorite spot is what I call the courtyard; it’s in the middle of the complex by the flag pole.  It’s right outside the USO tent so lots of people hang out there for the wifi (myself included).  There are a number of picnic tables and round café type tables and chairs.  I think it really has a bit of café feel to it which I find really strange considering we’re in the middle of the capital of a country that has been at war for how long? 

They have a laundry service here too which while not the highest quality is free and pretty quick.  Plus they fold your clothes for you.  I have good AC in my room (but it’s not even that hot, plus its dry so even 85-90 is pretty decent), I don’t have to cook, clean, or do my laundry.  So far this is a pretty decent place.

Other than that there is a bazaar on Sundays which I’ll talk about later, it’s pretty cool.  Work is going decently, the long days and constant go really hasn’t been much of an issue yet so hopefully it won’t be. And the army is still the army, I can deal with that.

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