My holiday didn’t start out as wonderfully as it could have, but it turned into a pretty decent day. I began by oversleeping -- a bad habit that’s becoming harder to fight. Given that I’m leaving in roughly three weeks, it’s hard to motivate myself to be diligent at work. It doesn’t help that I didn’t even turn off the light until 0300 last night, and probably didn’t fall asleep until at least ½ hour later. I slept in later than I wanted to, but I didn’t stress it too much because, like I said, I just don’t really care any more. I strolled into work at a little past 1030, and my coworkers promptly informed me that Lieutenant Colonel So-And-So had shown up looking for me about an hour earlier. Apparently he wasn’t happy that I was absent at our pre-arranged meeting time. Whoops. I had totally spaced the fact that just yesterday I told this particular LTC to meet me at the Help Desk at 0930 so that I could help him solve a printer problem. Again, I didn’t stress it -- I’m too concerned with leaving at this point to give a crap about anyone’s printer problems, Lieutenant Colonels or not. I ended up calling the guy and smoothing things over, so it worked out fine in the end anyway. I managed to hang around the office for all of about fifteen minutes before I headed out on my errand for the day -- obtaining a new ID card. I was braced for a long line and lots of waiting at the ID card office, but to my surprise there were only two guys in front of me when I showed up. I still had to wait for a solid 25 minutes before I was called in, but hey, it could have been a lot worse. I turned in my paperwork, answered the lady’s questions regarding my personal information, and then sat down for the photo. She snapped the picture, and about two minutes later she handed me the card and told me to look it over and verify the accuracy of the information on it (name spelled right, correct DOB, etc). It took me a minute to finish the task she gave me, because the first and most obvious thing that I noticed about the ID was the photo. I almost laughed out loud. “Is that seriously what I look like?” I thought to myself. I'm the kind of guy who will tell you that I don’t worry too much about appearances and how I look, and to some degree that’s true. It’s definitely become truer since I’ve landed out here. I’ve sort of “let myself go” over the past year, and especially the past month or so, and I think that seeing the ID photo was the first time in several weeks that I’d actually taken a good hard look at myself. And it cracked me up. It was entertaining enough that I’ve decided to share it with you. Pictured below are two photos of me sitting side by side -- the photo on the left is from my (now expired) Colorado drivers license, which was taken on 22 June 2004, roughly a month before I left for Afghanistan. The photo on the right is from my Army ID, taken this morning. Enjoy: Man, that still makes me laugh. Crazy what a year will do to you. I sat the two IDs side by side for one of my coworkers to look at, and she told me it looks like I’ve spent the year in jail, not in Afghanistan. Sometimes I’m not sure there’s much difference. Anyway, I got a huge kick out of that photo, so I thought I’d share. It was getting close to lunchtime when I left the ID card office, and I wasn’t in the mood to go straight back to work, so I didn’t. I headed over to the DSST Compound, which is where I live. Our little group of contractors, along with the military folks that are in charge of us, had decided to throw a Fourth of July party. I went and hung out for a bit, which was a good time. The grills were already fired up and in full swing, so I took advantage. I enjoyed some ribs, BBQ chicken, hot dogs, and even one of these: Someone had the crazy idea of setting up a Karaoke machine at the party, and I stayed long enough to watch one of the System Administrators do a hilarious rendition of Billie Jean before I headed back to work. The last highlight of the holiday was at mail call. I showed up in case some of my CDs had arrived, but honestly I didn’t expect anything to be here this quickly. Sure enough two of the six shipments showed up today, which was awesome. I ducked out of work early to rip the new music to my iPod, and right now I’m rocking out to an album called Rump Shaker by the Suburban Legends, who as of this evening are my new favorite band. These guys rule.