I cannot explain why but there is an immense depth of emotion that I felt on the evening that I took this photograph. Not only did I notice the chinook flying by, but so did the man in the photograph. There are no words, it just speaks volumes to me in feelings.
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3. Love trail mix.
4. Love these carpets in my little part of the shared tent. The two small ones were made in Afghanistan.
6. Beautiful sunset.
7. Had pizza.
Moreover, this small FOB (Forward Operating Base) is relatively safe and has so far gone largely unscathed by attacks and mass fatalities compared to the reports I hear about other parts of Afghanistan. "Tragic" is the word that always crosses my mind when I ponder some of the stories that come my way. We are all blessed where I am stationed. But as sure as God lives I know that while walking alone at night, even to use the latrine and return to my tent with my unit, I look over my shoulder almost on automatic. Why? It is smart to remain vigilant, minding one's own situational awareness and ready to act. In short, I thank God as much as I can remember, for allowing me to wake to see another morning. And as hard as it has always been for me to get out of bed and get myself moving, squeezing out a sacrifice of praise and thanks is beyond owed--giving thanks should be automatic and conscientious. In a heartbeat is how much time we' all have to live. So I look at my boots and then I look up at the sky every single day and give my God thanks for keeping me from mortal danger.
Since having been deployed in Afghanistan for two-plus months now, I have taken a good deal of photographs. About a week ago it dawned on me that I should take full advantage of my time here by making a photo book of the best photographs that I will have taken by the end of my time in this country. So I have set a goal of having the book completed by the Fall of 2013 and no later. It's very exciting and yet somewhat overwhelming because I have taken so many photographs--well over 1,000. It's sounds crazy I suppose and I want to limit the book to 300 pages or less. We shall see.
Finally, the photo you see above is of an Afghan National Army soldier who wanted a photograph taken of him with my battle buddy (who is not pictured here). I cropped the photo because I found his eyes and expression so striking that it just draws you in, even without the cropping. This is actually a much, much wider image.