DINING FACILITY BREAKFAST
Standing in line with members of 34 other coalition countries waiting to get in to the DFAC for breakfast. It's already 36 degrees out and you can smell the meagre air conditioning inside, along with bacon, eggs, pancakes and more.
WHEN FIRST WE MET
A candle dedicated to every service member who was deployed when their child was born. This candle combines the soft scents of baby powder and linen, evoking all the tenderness of when you first met and held your child.
Hospitality and and tea play a very important part in the lives of the Afghan people. Tea is drunk copiously throughout the day. The warmth and generosity of Afghan hospitality can be almost overwhelming at times. The scents of tea in this candle will remind you of that hospitality.
CARE PACKAGE FROM HOME
Corporal Jack returns from the Post Office tent in camp, he walks over and hands you a package. The handwriting is familiar and your heart skips a beat. You leave the group and take it to a quiet area, away from everyone. Unclipping your K-Bar you slice the packing tape and fold back the flaps...
It's a fairly calm sea state 2 as the bow of the ship cuts through the ocean somewhere between Vic and Pearl. Water meets sky 360 degrees around. The breeze on the quarterdeck hints of the darker skies on the horizon about 30 degrees off the port side, but that's hours away. Right now just feel the ship breathing and enjoy the breeze.
FIRST NIGHT HOME
It's been a long deployment. Throughout all the heat and dirt and duty you've dreamed of this moment. The long flight home, the welcome hugs and tears at the airport, the dinner and wine. Now the moment's here. You stare into each others eyes as the scent of fresh cool linen, soft jasmine and familiar musks envelope you.
I'm not sure I even have the energy to lace up my boots. As I do, I notice the O-Pos patch is starting to come off. It's not light out yet and I'm sweating even before I get my tac vest on. My best friend on my combat sling keeps me company as I trudge through tent city. Horrible coffee and a smoke as I wait for the MRAPs. A gust of diesel as the gunner looks down smiling. Tossing my coffee I climb up into the crew door. Sandbox blues.
So many of my vices are not available deployed, but coffee, coffee is still here. Walking through the green zone to stand in line for coffee at ISAF, worth the risk. If you like the rich smell of coffee, you will like this delicious blend. Savour the aromatic bliss of bold espresso, brown sugar and caramel and awaken the senses with a luscious layer of sweet, creamy vanilla on top.
WORN LEATHER HOLSTER
NO. Thanks for the issue but this is not a holster I will spend my tour wearing. My 1944 Browning 9-mm does not like it either. On Friday I will wander through the local market and find a better one. And there it is! Pop it over both shoulders, browning in, mags in. When not in full battle-rattle it's been a good friend.
DECOMPRESSION IN CYPRUS
I don't want to be here. I don't want to do this. I've done my time I just want to go home. I'm good. I'm good. I'm fine. I already filled this out. Yes, I turned it in. Is this the right room? What is this briefing? Is decompression supposed to be 'compressing' me?
Thank god it's evening. Where's Jon and Ed and Joanne and Craig? Ahh. Excellent. Ok.
Turn up the music. Finally. A little 'decompressing'.