Three Weeks!

It’s getting late my time, but I felt like a post was overdue and I wanted to throw one up before I call it a night. It also occurred to me just now that this is a good day to commemorate -- I will be back home in Colorado Springs exactly three weeks from today! (that is, assuming I count today as Thursday, which I do. I suppose it’s officially Friday now, but I still maintain that changing the date at midnight is completely stupid. It’s still Thursday night. Granted, it’s late on Thursday night, but it’s still Thursday night). Yep, it’s official now, I've got the itinerary and everything. It looks like it’s my job to get myself on a military flight to Germany, and from there the company takes over and flies me home on their dime. They’ve got me booked to leave Frankfurt on the 27th, and thanks to a time change that works in my favor I’ll get to Columbus, GA that same afternoon. I’ll only be in Columbus for 24 hours, so hopefully the rumors are true that all I have to do there is turn in my two duffel bags of Army gear, because that’s about all I’ll have time to do. I leave Columbus on the afternoon of the 28th and arrive in Colorado Springs later that night -- exactly three weeks from today! My travel weary soul won’t get any rest, though. Apparently my family is planning a vacation to visit some aunts/uncles/cousins/grandparents in Washington state that weekend, and my step-dad can get me a plane ticket for free through his company (“free” for him at least, I guess the company’s still got to pay for it), so I’ll be in the Springs for a mere 24 hours or less before I board yet another plane, this time destined for eastern Washington. I’ll hang out there and visit family for a few days, arriving back in the Springs on the 3rd of August -- just in time for the weekend of shows that I’ve dubbed the “Welcome Home Josh Awesome Ska Party.” I can’t wait for Reel Big Fish and Catch 22, and apparently neither can several of my friends, because the responses to my “I’ll buy your ticket” invitation have started to pour in. Way to go people, I’m stoked to have so many of you along for the ride. It’s all about the Rock! And speaking of the rock, my huge order of CDs has started to arrive, so I’ve been busy ripping CDs onto my iPod for the last couple of days. I’ve got way too many CDs sitting in my room right now to give each one the devoted “first listen” that they all deserve, but I’m doing my best. I can tell you that Suburban Legends are an amazing band, and I definitely should have jumped on that bandwagon a long time ago. The same goes for None More Black -- those guys prove that there are still bands out there who know how to scream out a great punk rock tune. I’m also fairly impressed with the new MxPx album -- I’ve only given it one listen so far, but it lives up to all the punk rock message board hype that I’ve been reading on the internet. It’s definitely better than their last release, which was, to put it lightly, not so good (and this coming from a guy who has the band’s logo tattooed on his shoulder). I don’t think we’ll ever get anything from these guys as awesome as their first three releases, but the latest effort is definitely impressive. Right now I'm listening to the newest Aquabats album, and let me just say that it is AWESOME! Granted, these guys have slowly evolved past their ska roots into a sort of Devo-esque punk band, but this lasest CD is hands down the best one since “The Fury Of The Aquabats” -- possibly their best effort ever. The song “Hot Summer Nights” literally made me laugh out loud, something only The Aquabats are capable of. I can't wait to see these guys live. Oh, and I also can’t wait to bust open The Toasters’ DVD that arrived today. I have no idea when I’ll actually be going to bed tonight, but it doesn’t look like it’ll be any time soon. Otherwise, things are coming together nicely. I have the day off tomorrow, and I plan to devote several hours to another round of packing and shipping. I’m getting close to being all packed up and ready to go, so that’s good. I’ve got tentative plans to get down to Kabul next week, so that trip is still a go. I could tell you all about how terrible things continue to be at work, but I’ll spare you. It would take too much time and be too boring, so I’ll save the details for a face-to-face story some other time. Suffice it to say that I’m getting out of here just in time. Also, for those that may be desiring/expecting it, I don’t necessarily have plans for a big, long, “last hurrah” post that eloquently sums up my year in Afghanistan and leaves you with inspiring morsels of wisdom. I’m sure you’ll know when my last post is (this is definitely not it), but I can’t guarantee how great it will be. I just wanted to get that out of the way now. With that said -- thanks for reading. It’s truly been a pleasure to use this blog as a means of keeping in touch with my family and friends over the many long months that I’ve been out here, and I’ve even managed to pick up a few new friends along the way, which is more than I could have asked for. I appreciate all the time you’ve spent catching up on my life and posting comments about yours. Just think, in three more weeks we’ll be able to share even more over a cup of coffee or a beer. I can’t wait!


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