Location: Kabul, Afghanistan
Its been on my mind a lot recently, how our perspective frames our outlook. Two recent events brought it to the forefront though; the first incident was when Amanda and I went to the neighboring base to have dinner with our friend Chuck. As we were leaving and suiting up in our body armor we commented that well have to do this again in the states when we get back, and maybe we wont have to wear body armor as we leave Chucks house. It struck us though that its become second nature to us here to wear body armor everywhere we go, and that just seems like its something that shouldnt be normal. The second thing was when it warmed up to about 20F a couple of weeks ago. It had been so cold the previous few weeks that we all felt like we should be wearing short sleeved shirts.
So why is this important?
Because the Afghans dont have the same perspective we do. We come from a background where intelligence, hard work, and perseverance matter. They simply do not. In their world, trust and family matter more than ability because accomplishments matter very little. Consequently, its very difficult for a westerner to explain concepts like efficiency to a population that works usually less than an hour in a four or five hour day. It simply doesnt affect them.
So as I continue to try to help them I have to constantly remember where they are in the world and what they value. Ultimately though, if they are to have western capabilities and lifestyles, which they continually claim they do want, they will be the ones that have to change their values. To do that they need to see how theirs fits, or doesnt, with the rest of the world. So maybe the best thing I can give them is actually free, a new perspective on how things can be
My love to all
Location: Camp Eggers, Kabul, Afghanistan
Merry Christmas Everyone!!!
I just wanted to start this journal with a quick entry on Christmas day from here in Camp Eggers, Kabul, Afghanistan. Today was very relaxing. I slept in till about 1030, got up, showered and went to work in my PT gear (on low battle rhythm days we can wear our PT gear ... and I managed to get away with not shaving
So then I went into work to say hi to my team mates and go to lunch. Not much else to report, but when we went to dinner later in the day we had the same food again
not too surprising for around here.
So a few of us went down to the Clamshell (the MWR tent) to see what was happening for fun tonight, but since nothing much was on we had a hot chocolate by the fire and then called it a night. Not much by the way of fun, but a very safe and peaceful Christmas, and thats what its all about!!
So peace and love to everyone out there!! Take Care and Merry Christmas.