Buried deep in my Google drive – Baghdad month to month. Farewell party poem, January 2009

Baghdad in January was cold and rainy.
Raindrops sounded like bullets
hitting the tin roof of my hootch,
keeping me awake all night long,
all January. Maybe it was bullets.

Baghdad in February was busy, busy.
New job, new boss, new staff,
new stuff to write home about.
Steep learning curve in February.

Baghdad in March was scary.
Very scary.
I learned to pray again
because I knew I couldn’t make it
to the duck and cover bunker quick enough,
even if I tried. Siren. 4 seconds. Kaboom.
March was very scary.

Baghdad in April was miserable.
Plenty of room in the Hotel Republican Palace,
When safety needs drove us out of the hooches
to avoid incoming mortar rounds,
but not enough bathrooms or showers to go around.
Lucky for me, R&R came.
Home to Cairo in April.

Baghdad in May was a relief.
I packed up my hootch
and moved to the NEC apartment
and hardened shelter.
We might survive this after all.
Relief in May.

Baghdad in June was busy, busy.
The bidding cycle started.
Mil Air cancellations forced us
to consider emergency commercial alternatives,
opening a big old pandora’s box.

Baghdad in July was busy, busy.
The bidding cycle continued.
Lucky for me, R&R came.
Home to Washington.

Baghdad in August was very hot
and busy, busy. New staff to train.
The bidding cycle ended.

Baghdad in September was hot and busy.

Baghdad in October was hot and busy.

Baghdad in November was 2nd R&R.
Elections at home. Optimism.

Baghdad in December was moving to the new office.

Baghdad in January was over.
Unscheduled overnight on the tarmac
In Kuwait City. Hot and stinky.
Made new friends.
Home at last . . .

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Author: Raymond Maxwell

https://raymmaxx.wordpress.com/ Librarian, archivist, retired foreign service officer and Navy veteran.

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