24 June 2006

Ahhh...the pool!

Today's destination was one that I have been looking forward to: the International Zone (IZ). As usual it was a very early wakeup followed by an uneventful trip to Baghdad. Instead of FOB Shield (see a few days back), this time we stopped at the IZ, which also includes the American Embassy (while they build the new one). This is the same place President Bush met Prime Minister Maliki a few weeks ago.

With a few hours to spare, the highlight of the day was the pool behind the palace complex (I was warned ahead of time to bring my suit and towel, thank you very much!). It is just your standard pool, but given the temperatures (110s-120s), the circumstances (I haven't even seen a pool in months), and our very basic amenities at Ashraf, the pool was heavenly. Surprisingly, even given the very hot air temperatures, the water wasn't too warm, and was actually refreshing.

We played a couple games of pool volleyball with the boys (if there is anybody who deserves a treat like that, its the guys doing the downtown runs everyday!) and generally had a good time. The DFAC was typical of the places I've been before.

We also visited the parade ground where Saddam famously fired off a shotgun from his balcony. Of course, everyone took pictures.

The drive back was similarly uneventful, although again it was much, much hotter (even with "air conditioning"). Lest you believe the day was all fun, we got a lot of good data for our systems on both runs, and were able to forward it to the appropriate people for analysis.

I'm thinking of making the IZ a regular destination...
Post a Comment