A young man's strange, erotic journey from Milan to Minsk...and apparently, back again.

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Location: Denver, Colorado, United States

The details of my life are quite inconsequential, really. Summers in Rangoon...luge lessons...

Saturday, April 08, 2006

JAF sights (provide your own sounds)

Fire up your favorite call-to-prayer tape, or at least the old Ravi Shankar you still have collecting space in your cabinet, and take a tour through the sights of Jalalabad Airfield, or in true military fashion, JAF (not to be confused with JAL, the former amusing Japanese airline...well, at least it was amusing to 5-year-old American boys who got to fly on it and had imaginary friends named Aso...but I digress).

The shield of 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, the great Lava Dogs of Kanoehe Bay, Hawaii, welcomes you to the airfield's camp. It's a lot like summer camp, as far as the food and flies are concerned...

The view through the wire to the farmlands directly behind the camp. The kids are funny, always yelling and waving when you run by. The men...well, they just stare longingly, especially on Thursdays. The guards might glance up from their tea parties, but then it's back to lounging.

If you're looking for the authentic Soviet-architecture-meets-central-Asian-construction motif, it's hard to top eastern Afghanistan. This is the back of Jalalabad airport's hanger, where (sigh) the bazaar was once held on Saturdays. It's since been shut down due to some...improprieties.

Can I interest you in some crappy bootleg DVDs, some cheap checkered hankies, maybe both? Bring for your wife...she like very much!

You want some of this, roundeye? Didn't think so! I kid, I kid...the Koreans are great. At least I think they're having fun- they laugh a lot, sometimes cook their own rice when our chow hall doesn't, and play a wacky soccer/volleyball hybrid in a tiny pit (in teams of 3-on-3) all afternoon.

One of the giant transport planes that lend the airfield its quiet feel. Ever seen one of these big birds take a dump? Well, stand by...

Isn't that impressive? It may not be Mayor Quimby riding a horse onto a cargo plane and then parachuting it out, but it still entertained me.

Ah, home sweet home, the latest edition. Just wait and see what accomodations I come up with next...I should photograph the regression, put in a coffee table book, and call it "Standard of Living? AfghaniDan's Downward Spiral"

Really though, despite the complete absence of privacy, a decent gym or chow hall, and a population that's three times its capacity, the place ain't so bad when you see scenes like this in the morning.


Anonymous Cousin_Tim said...

YOU GO MILLHOUSE! (In my best quimby typing imitation.)

April 8, 2006 at 3:07 PM  
Blogger John Mayer said...

"The jig is up, Quimby!"
"Oh Gawd!"

April 8, 2006 at 5:34 PM  
Anonymous V. Schroeder said...

Last picture is spectacular, thanks for the bird's eye view!

April 8, 2006 at 9:39 PM  
Blogger Major John said...

Hmmm. It does seem your accomodations are, uh, descending in quality. Next up, you'll be sleeping in a fighting position on a secondary peak of one of the Hindu Kush...

April 10, 2006 at 7:47 PM  

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