Big news - Gunnar got on a cute little helicopter to begin his journey home for R&R today. It's along process to get soldiers home for this type of thing. The end result is that I have no idea what time or even what day he's actually going to be arriving in the US but any day not spent at his COP and closer to civilization is a good day. He'll likely stay at the Kandahar Airfield (KAF) for at least two days before flying to Kuwait for up to a few more days. All of these en route days do not count as part of his R&R which is really awesome. As desperately as I want to see him, I don't mind a bit if it takes him a full week to travel home. If you add that kind of travel time onto both ends of his R&R, that makes it almost a month off from actual war activities. And that makes me smile.
KAF has lots of delightful amenities like internet, non-satellite phones with decent connections, and lots of comforts of home like places to buy Red Bull, Oakleys and TGIFridays. Recently Gen McChrystal decided to close many of the commercial entertainment establishments at KAF stating "This is a war zone, not an amusement park". I totally agree with him - it seems to be a sign we've been somewhere too long when Tim Horton's and movie theaters start popping up. But at the same time, those things are really nice for soldiers that have been living in tents and caves for endless months and a little taste of something like home is probably very comforting.
Oh! And then there's that pesky volcano in Iceland that is wreaking havoc on all travel between Europe and the US. It's possible Gunnar's travel would be delayed by that too but I don't have any details on that yet. Either way, my man will be home this time next week!!!! I barely slept the last two nights, I am too excited and can't stop thinking about him.
In other news, the other day when I talked to Gunnar he told me to get us a babysitter and get myself a fancy dress because we're going to our very first Military Ball Sept 23rd!! I am really excited about this. I've heard about these balls before and I'm so excited to have a fancy date with my husband. We haven't had too many occasions to do something like that in the last few years. Of course I already went out and bought the perfect dress.
Next time I post, I should be telling you about Gunnar actually being here!