I love that the cleaning crew finishes cleaning the bathrooms right about the time I wake up. I love the promise that the sent of pine gives when I first walk in. I hate the fact that sometime in the ten minutes from when the cleaning crew reopens the bathrooms and I roll out of bed to use the bathroom, that there are two toilets already clogged, two more without toilet paper and another two stalls with broken doors or broken seats leaving only one operational toilet (which someone is using). How does this happen..?
I hate ramp ceremonies. Watching heroes being horizontally loaded into a helicopter in the middle of the night is emotionally draining. The flags covering their lifeless bodies are buffeted by the wash of rotors while we, the living, stand silently - saluting. There is one good thing about seeing the dead fly into the darkness. It is the second helicopter filled with Spec Ops guys heading out right behind them to even the score.
I love getting Sunset magazine from my Mom. I hate that I am so far from home.
I hate helping sort mail for several hours a day for several days in a row and not finding anything for myself. I love finding mail for the soldiers who are getting their first package.
I love that there are 24 hours in the day. I hate that I have to work for 16 of them. I love that I have lost 14 pounds since I have been in Afghanistan. I hate that it is because I forget to eat. I love bananas. I hate that the dining facility never has any. I also love ice cream. I hate that the dining facility ALWAYS has some.
I love Family Guy. I hate that I love Family Guy.
I hate being surprised by outgoing 120MM mortar fire. I love that it is outgoing mortar fire.
I hate pretending to be friends with people I know belong to the Taliban. I love that they don't know I am pretending. I love that they will eventually be in jail and that I can reveal the true nature of our relationship. I hate waiting.
I love that everyone knows who I am (in uniform and out, day or night). I hate that I don't know everyone who knows me. I love that I have the rest of the year to figure it out.