|Model of an Indian village and the Mayflower sitting in the center |
of the FOB Salerno dining facility
|The survivors of the 5K Turkey Trot strike a pose|
Next on the bustling holiday schedule was Thanksgiving mass here at the FOB Chapel. Father Hannon gave a beautiful homily addressing the need to give thanks even during times of stress and struggle, just as the pilgrims and even Abraham Lincoln did with the creation of the Thanksgiving Holiday right in the middle of the Civil War. The choir sounded especially heavenly today with the new addition of a pianist in Major Larres, an occupational therapist who was just assigned here to FOB Salerno.
|Soldiers and civilians wait in line for the FOB Salerno |
Instead of napping I decided to finish a few things up in the office during the afternoon. Dr. John Groninger, a Foresty Professor from Southern Illinois University, is currently on FOB Salerno and wanted to discuss upcoming projects and the possibility of him joining our team on a mission outside the FOB. John is currently conducting research in the region as a part of a USAID-funded Afghanistan Water Agriculture and Technology Transfer (AWATT) Project. We discussed some of our current operations and it appears John will be able to join us on our mission to Mashi Kalay where he’ll look to utilize his increment borer to sample tree trunks and also hope to meet with the agricultural extension agent assigned to the area.
I can’t say I was anywhere near hungry by the time dinner rolled around, but what the heck? May as well indulge a bit! John is traveling alone during this portion of his research so I invited him to dinner. (We had planned on meeting for dinner at 6:30PM in an effort to watch the Macy’s Parade, but apparently it was aired a bit later as I saw it later in the evening.) The majority of our dinner discussion consisted of all we had to be thankful for and the many different experiences a trip such as this Afghan Adventure can bring. Most important to both of us that list of things to be thankful for was family. John has young children back in Illinois and he mentioned how he had hoped to be home in time to watch a musical recital for one of his daughters in early December.
|Must have been a bountiful harvest! |
From L-R: Captain Randy Cuyler, Major Jeremy Gulley, Major Tony Kaiser,
Major Shane Robbins, 1st Lt. Bart Lomont