Last night we went down this narrow alley and stopped when some kids threw rocks and nearly hit the gunner on my vehicle, who stands up through the roof of the hum-v, next to a 50 cal. machine gun. So we stopped to find out why they were throwing rocks. I got out and was standing guard by the truck.
These kids came up to me and all started carrying on. They all shook hands with me and were all laughing. One kept saying, over and over, "I love you, and my father and mother love you: we all love you." Another gave us the thumbs up and said, “Yeeeaaahh Bush! Down with Saddam!" And they just kept on and kept on with saying things like this.
And, believe it or not, but this is very typical of the people here. They are totally prospering and are very happy with what we have done for them. As we road down the dark alley, that was lined with hundreds of Iraqis, they all started cheering us. It was pretty incredible. ....
We went out today and went down another very narrow road and stopped and I pulled guard again. Not much happened, except me and Sgt. B. - that they call "Old Fart," and who is a Vietnam vet - got to talking about French quarters and Bourbon street in New Orleans. We got on this subject because the closest thing that the U.S. has that looks anything like it is here is French Quarters in New Orleans. So I am telling ya'll this to give you an idea of what this city is like. It is many open markets and is barely room to drive down many of the roads and back alleys. People are everywhere, and donkeys and donkey carts with their riders too.
Last night, right next to us, and down a very dark alley, I heard the most awful racket. It wound up being this donkey that was standing there, all by himself, and he was braying with the most awful racket I have ever heard before. You could hear him everywhere, he was so loud.
The sides of the narrow roads are loaded with open markets and people. I was standing by a bread bakery today, when we got out. They make flat bread and throw it against a stone wall to flatten it before they put it in the oven to bake. It taste really good, you ask me.
So this is what it is like here: like French Quarters in New Orleans.
The people are well fed, too, and seem very content with their lives, if not happy. It is a very, very close-knit society, and is something that we have seemed to have lost in the U.S., in many respects.
Well, ya'll, I better cut it short here, and I need to go. Was just letting ya'll know what all goes on here.
Oh yeah: all that candy many of you send me: I have given loads of it out at med-caps, in our aid station when they come in, and sometimes just individually, when I go on missions.
If you would like to send some hard candy to Richard for him to hand out please email me.
Sara of Soldiers' Angels USA and "her" soldier Richard from Iraq