Friday, December 31, 2010

Last Day of Gluttony

I have been back from Afghanistan now for a little over two months and I have done exactly what I said I was not going to do.  I have eaten like it is going out of style.  I have not run or swam like I should have.  I haven’t biked much either, but I have an excuse for that, which I will discuss in a minute.   The last real run I did was a Turkey Trot on a family vacation in the Keys during Thanksgiving.   That is how pathetic I have been.  After Thanksgiving we went spent 10 days in Puerto Rico and on cruise.  During this time I ate and drank WAY too much.  Two extra days stuck in Chicago over Christmas did not help either.

My excuse for lack of riding is this—I had to move the bike and trainer out of my house because it is on the market.  Our realtor has us keeping things in our house to a minimum.  Since the house is rather small I completely agree with her.  We were suppose to close on the new house on Wednesday but that did not occur.  Now we are shooting for Monday.  All I can say about the underwriters is tell us up front what documentation is needed.  That allows us and the seller to be prepared.  Don’t wait until the last “effing” minute to throw something new at us.  So lets hope Monday or Tuesday works out.

The good news is once we get settled in the new house, I have one of the four bedrooms as mine.  I am having a flat screen mounted on the wall so during the cold winters I can ride and watch some shoot’em up movies.  The new house is over twice the size of our current one and has been completely renovated.  I am excited to get in and get settled.

Today is the last day of Gluttony for the bride and I.  We have been grazing on appetizer foods as we watch football games.  Tomorrow I have a 20 mile bike ride scheduled.  I am excited to get out and ride the new bike some more. 

So much for 2010.  Lets all welcome 2011. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

Slowly Working Out

I had such high hopes for my workout on my return.  However, life and laziness (I am not the Lazy Triathlete for nothing) have gotten in the way.  I have been swimming the last month.  I am back up to about 2000 yards.  Most of these workouts are rather slow with lots of drills thrown.  I haven’t run in over a week.  Most of my runs have been on the short and slow side, especially since the weather has gotten colder.  I am going to try and run for about an hour tomorrow. 

The other issue that has been tying me up is the process of buying a house and selling a house.  We were looking at one that did not have a buyer for a while, dragging our feet hoping that no one was interested.  At the last minute we were in a bidding war, unprepared, and ended up losing that one.  We have found another house and have a contract on it.  Currently there are two issues holding it up.  We are still awaiting the mold test and the VA appraisal.   I am concerned about the VA appraisal.  I am hearing horror stories regarding the this process. 

This house has been completely re-done on the inside.  It is basically brand spanking new.  I will need to enlarge the deck and the backyard needs some TLC, but that is not an overly difficult process—just time consuming.  Wish us luck.

We also went to the Keys for Thanksgiving.  Myself, the Bride, her mother and father, and her sister and her family.  We had a blast.  Plenty of sun, fruity drinks andKey-Diving-3 some great scuba diving.   In addition to the diving we also did a 5K turkey trot at the resort.   I promised the Bride I would run with her.  It was a lot of fun if not the fastest race of my life. 

Next Friday we head to Puerto Rico for a cruise.  So I better work out hard the next six days.  I just wish I had the new bike easily accessible so I could do some trainer rides.  But we are keeping our house clutter free incase someone comes to look. 

I hope everyone has a great weekend!!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Back to Bamiyan

The last week I have gotten in a few runs, a couple of days on the trainer ( I love the new bike), and a couple of 2000 yard days in the pool.  But for the most part I have been working on the doing all the things needed to buy and sell a house.  However, not to jinx ourselves I am going to refrain from going into any detail at this time. 

This past year was my second trip to Afghanistan.  I spent 2002 in Kabul, Bamiyanbamiyan_map200 (home to the big Buddha's that the Taliban destroyed), and the Airbase at Bagram.  My favorite place was Bamiyan.  I was absolutely a beautiful place.  The people there were honest and hard working.  The Hazaras were persecuted by the Taliban and had suffered greatly.  Bamiyan is the middle of country is very isolated due the terrain.   During my 2002 time in Bamiyan I was previledged enough to build numerous schools  for both boys and girls,Boys and Girls School in Bamian emplace wells, and other activies that benefited the people  of this impoverished area.   I have enough stories about this place to fill a few hours over numerous beers.  During this tour, I was lucky enough to get back up there for a little while.   Man how the place has changed. 

I escorted some Afghan government leaders and luckily we flew Chase Helo over Shibar Passinstead of taking the long ass trip in a vehicle.  It was a wonderful experience to see all the changes.  There was a lot of new construction going on, at least 5k of roads had been paved, the airfield was being used.  Most of all I enjoyed seeing the safe house we had lived in 2002 had reverted back to the hotel it has been previously. 

Outside old safe house

This was our safehouse 2002.  20 Americans living by your wits

Old safe house outhouse

This was our outhouse.  We had carpeted and even magazine holders for reading material.

At the old safe house

The Lazy Triathlete over looking one of the Buddha holes in March 2010.

Inside old safe house 1 Inside old safe house 3

This what the hotel looks like now.


Enough reminiscing, it is time to get some sleep and get in a few miles in the morning. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


I am back from a tour in the great state of chaos called Afghanistan.   I have been back for about a week and have been sort of relaxing.   However, I have started working again.  Which is pretty good.  Sleep is still not as solid as I would like.  But when your body gets use to only 5-6 hours a night and you through jet lag in on top of it, it is no wonder I am waking up at 0300 or so every day. 

None of my workouts have been anything earth shattering.  I have been running about 5K this past week.  It is getting easier.  Tuesday was my first day on my new bike (more to follow on that), and today I swam for about 30 minutes.  I lost track of the laps, but I guess it was 1200 yards or so.  Nothing hard, just some lazy swimming and basic drills

Now back to the bike.  Before I left I worked out a deal with the Bride, that if I New-Bikesaved so much money for a new house that I could get a new bike.  So after much research, etc etc, I ended up with a Trek 6.2 Madone.  I took possesion from my LBS on Monday but due to the weather there was no riding.  Tuesday morning I headed out for what was suppose to be an hour ride.  Just to get my feet back under me and see how she handled.  A little over half way through the ride (I stopped at my local running store to get new socks) and when I returned to the bike the rear tire was flat.  I did not have a spare tube, so Dumbass (that is me) walked 2 miles back home pushing the bike.  Not very smart.

The good news the tube is changed and if it is not raining on Thursday I plan on getting in that hour or so ride. 

I will be posting pictures and stuff from the year in Afghanistan from time to time.  So if you are interested stay tuned to this channel.

I am glad to be home and I hope my readers are still there.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Hanging out Karzblacastan

Things here in Karzblacastan (I will tell you where we really are after we depart) are actually pretty decent—other than the fact we are still here. Sunday we had a pretty intense snow storm here. It was reported at over 9inches which is supposed to be a record for here. There is still snow everywhere. Night of snow 2Luckily, today the sun came out and when the wind was not blowing it was actually very pleasant. If the roads had not still been icy I would have gone for a run. There was suppose to be a good abs class at the gym this afternoon, but I napped through it.Snow outside my tent

Before you think that I am being overly lazy napping the afternoon away I was up most of the night thanks to the Bulgarians. TheirKO in the snow flight was cancelled and they all came back to the tent. They are not the quietest of peoples. They also had one guy who had that penetrating voice that even made it through the songs of my iPod.

The food is pretty good. The chow hall is open 24 hours a day so food is not a problem. What is very interesting is that the sun does not come up until after 0830. This morning about 0745 I was leaving the chow hall and it looked like the middle of the night. There were very few people out and it was dark and dreary. It looked like it was midnight. If we don’t get out on Tuesday we have a little “cultural excursion” planned for about 10 people.Chowhall I am not scheduled to go on the trip but it will be nice to have some of the younger soldiers get out and see another country. Especially one that they probably never see again. If you are permanent party at this location you get to avail yourself of these trips. It took our Bde Commander to get this approved for us.

We are all in good spirits and ready to get on with the mission. However, I would like one more day here to assist in the resetting of my internal clock.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Getting Ready to Head Out

As usual I have been very crappy in writing but this time I am going to blame it on poor internet at Fort Dix.   That is only part of the problem.  The other issue is the fact that I was very busy as the commander of the unit getting all the parts in the right places, herding cats, and all the other great things that commanders get to do.  However, that time is just about over.  We will be leaving within the week.  I will be sending out an address after we arrive if anyone is interesting in sending mail. 

I did get out of Fort Dix for the Holidays.  The Bride and I made to Chicago to spend time with the family.  It is so much fun to spend time with my niece and nephew, especially at  Christmas.  The youthful joy of the Holidays is so much fun to watch and be a part of.   In addition to the exuberance of the youth, we older kids got to enjoy lots of good drink and food.  My sister-in-law made their family secret recipe stuffing with contains all sorts of Italian meats.  I just love this stuff and ate way to much of it.  We enjoyed some Wii bowling and ping-pong competitions.  I enjoyed the Wii so much I bought one for the house.  However, I will not get to use until late fall.  What was I thinking?  On the return trip we were luckily only delayed about hour in Chicago thanks to mother nature.  But with all the cancellations the day after Christmas we were very lucky. 

When I returned I went to BWI to see some of the people from the unit off as the departed early to Afghanistan to pave the way us.  It was great to see everyone is such high spirits and ready to get on the mission.  It makes me very proud to be serving with people such as this.  They had to leave their families early to get overseas and do what needed to be done for the unit and help ensure success. 

The Bride and I wonderful meal and fellowship with some of the most incredible people I know.   Laura, whom I work for, and her husband and a former co-worker who left our Firm to go back and work in his native country.  He is back now in the US and is starting his own company.  These are some of the smartest people that I have ever been associated with and I happy to have them take time out their busy schedules to spend a couple of hours with us prior to my departure.  As usual it was a stimulating evening that left me happy to be working where I do. 

Finally, the Bride and I enjoyed great company with a long time friend who no longer leaves in the DC and his girlfriend.   We had a great dinner at fantastic local restaurant on New Years Eve.  Great food, great wine, and great friends.  What more could anyone ask for. 

This will be last missive before heading out sometime in the next few days.  I am sorry to be leaving the Bride, my friends, and everything else at home.  However, this is mission is important to to country and I am ready to get over there and accomplish what I can accomplish and influence things in my little sphere of influence.  

The location I am to be posted at should be good for running and I hope they have some stationary bikes.  I have a work out plan in mind and I hope to get up to some good long runs and garner some mileage on the stationary bike.  I have book of work outs for triathletes and I will be making time to get my butt back in shape.