Saturday, August 05, 2006

Iraqi Business

Doing business with Iraqis is a lot like wrestling with pigs. The way things work here are that you have to exchange so many formalities and then talk about each other’s families for so long that a 5 minute meeting can last 3 hours. Usually the only meaningful discussion occurs in the last 5 to 15 minutes. It can be frustrating to say the least. I really do think they try to find the most difficult way to do something and then choose that option.

For example. Today I was walking to chow at the KBR compound and I saw some street cleaners. They had these big leaf blowers (which is rare, usually they just push dirt around with brooms) and were proceeding to blow dirt off the street and sidewalk. Ok, great, it is just going to be right back on there in like 2 seconds, but for those 2 seconds it really looked uh, less dirty. So anyway, they decided to do things the hard way by blowing the dirt INTO the wind. All they had to do was start on the other end of the street and work that way to have the wind at their backs, but nope, they tried to blow dirt headfirst into the wind. Duh.

Oh well, I don’t care, it isn’t my job. So anyhow last night we had a decent time at the BBQ. I ran into my date from the summer ball and we had a few laughs. The military unit I work with is changing out and it was a dudes going away party. It is nice to have friends with private villas because the military guys can get out from under the flagpole for a minute. I had’nt attended a party at this villa before and I have to say they cooked some pretty impressive food. If you go to Camp Victory near the BIAP you can usually get some good Angus beef. IT isn’t cheap, but when rent is 20,000 USD/Month, a few hundred isn’t going to kill you ya know? SO here is the bar picture.

After the dinner me and a buddy smoked a decent cigar. Like all Cuban cigars in Iraq (hell everything) this one was a tad bit dry. Fortunately the guy who brought it is a cigar nut so he had done a pretty good job at re-humidifying it. No complaints I guess. Here is the cigar.

Well only a few more days until I get out of here. It looks like I will be attending the wedding after all. I haven’t been to Scotland and am looking forward to it. I am flying my sis over from the States because it is like a dream for her to see the UK and we are staying in the actual Edinburgh castle. It will be a nice break from Iraq. Hell, Afghanistan would be a nice break from Iraq.



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