Sand and Tsunami – – UK 26

Accounts of Travel between Saudi Arabia and Japan of an Army / Navy couple  from http://sandandtsunamis.blogspot.com/2007
/03/blog-for-you-to-check-out.html

Saturday, March 24, 2007
Blog for you to check out…

Ijust received an email from one of my old friends, Bill. He’s aLutheran Chaplain, and was in my first unit many years ago. We spent alot of time in Somalia back in 92-93, and in many ways, he contributedto the love of independent travel that I have now. He started ablog on Blogger last year, and somehow I missed it until now. It’scalled “The Accidental Christian” and deals primarily with spiritualityand military service. He’s a very wise man, and it’s a well-writtenblog. I encourage you to go have a look. A bit more of Bill and his influence, since this is primarily a travel blog . Whilewe were in Somalia, we had a lot of time where we were not decisivelyengaged in any operations, planning, or “Army stuff.” So, we spent alot of time chatting. He’s fluent in French (got his Doctor of Theologyfrom the University of Strasbourg), and having had a couple of years ofhigh school French, we developed an ongoing story to kill time. It wasa good refresher for my French skills (poor, at best), and revolvedaround me taking a trip through Quebec via bicycle. Along the way, Ihad many adventures, culminating in my having to extricate myself froma Canadian Cannibal family who threatened to eat me if I didn’t marrytheir daughter. Interesting, to say the least. Incidentally,after I got back from Somalia, I did take a trip up into Quebec,hitting Montreal, Quebec City, and all the way out to the mouth of theSt. Lawrence to the Gaspe Peninsula. That was the first venture intotraveling for the sake of the journey itself…just going wherever mywhims took me. I did not, however, run into any cannibal familiesthreatening me with consumption. He also brought along a small propane stove and machinettaandwould make espresso every morning that we would sip out of canteen cupswhile watching the bats try to bite our roommate Chris. We figured itwas sort of karmic, since Chris would cut open MREs and take out theM&Ms. Eventually, one did bite him, on the big toe, and he had toget evacuated to Mogadishu. After a couple of days there, he worked hisway back to Kismayu where we were, via the Mombassa, Kenya R&Rspot. Every time I make espresso in my own machinetta, I think back to those days. Heis an accomplished musician, and not knowing how long we’d be deployed,both of us brought our guitars. Every Friday night, we’d have “SomaliNights,” a sort of variety/talent show that whoever was around wouldcome and participate in. We had jugglers, rappers, other guitarists,and comedians all emerge from the unit to showcase their talents andbreak the monotony of life there. The picture posted above iswhen he and I went to the local Leper Colony to provide someentertainment for the kids that lived there. We spent an hour or sosinging and hamming it up with the community, and, hopefully, made somedesperate lives a little better for the time being. All this to say go and have a look around his site. You won’t be disappointed. The link…The Accidental Christian

1 comments:

Chaplain said…

Ahh”Somali Nights” so true Dave! However, during the recent OIF I had tosearch for another distraction from the rigors of combat operations andso we initiated the “Blue Room” which was a cigar smoking Plasma TVtheater for the Headquarters Officers and Senior NCOs….ahhh thesublime of the Blue Room. I remember with fondness our first venture into Somalian society and our playing and dancing for the Somalis–wow. Thanks for the kind words about the Accidental Christian. I guess some folks travel theologically rather than geographically.

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posted Sunday August 2007

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Summary

  • We spent alot of time in Somalia back in 92-93, and in many ways, he contributedto the love of independent travel that I have now.
  • Incidentally,after I got back from Somalia, I did take a trip up into Quebec,hitting Montreal, Quebec City, and all the way out to the mouth of theSt.