I have now met maybe 30 soldiers in Dohuk. They are here for R&R. i am trying to place my finger on it, but they are not amused. A little too serious to me, and not remembering to use the American Secret Weapon.
These boys are in good spirits. Strong, but who would really wants to be in Iraq.
(Besides crazy Hobo like me. But anywhere the guidebook says not to go...)
Too hot, no girls, and too much at a very young age. Life is good, and even in the worst of times and places that little saying still make me smile.
"Life is Good" turn on the Secret Weapon. Make these people laugh.
Always is, and always will be.
Thanks guys and gals.
Met a few women soldiers here.
I sat down today on the long bench of older statesmen. The bought me a Pepsi and we looked at each other and nodded heads. They are a cool bunch of men. I sit down and they place their 2 index fingers together.
"America - Kurdish"
Same sign as when they ask if I am married.
Kids - Mercedes and BMW's - Soldiers from Indiana
I am in room 110.
I think the country codes is: 964
City code is 62
Local Number is 7224653
From USA 011
011 964 62 7224653
It could be with extra 0
011 964 (0)62 7224653 Say American - Andy (Keep repeating slowly)
They will probably say. OK
My room number is not really important.
Say over and over America, America. Do not say United States.
They will not undertand. Talk very slow please.
This is getting fun. I am trying to help the radio station call me.
I guess if they really want, I can call them... hehehe
But as always... Bullshit walks, and money talks.
I think most people want to be famous. I am doing my duty and repaying them for helping me to get this Press Pass which I must hide very good for fear of lots of trouble. Not that I am being paid. Suppose to be an exchange. I say this and they say "HoboTraveler.com." I have said the "This"
Maybe I will go to the UNICEF office. hehehe, I think they have a satellite telephone. I have never known the UN or UNICEF to go anything but first class.
The always have these white SUVs that cost more than the whole village in most places I have visited. They do good, but not on the shoestring like a Hobo. But this place is missing the real power of any NGO (Non Govermental Organizations). There presence is hard to find.
Sadly there appears to be a museum of already about the crimes of Saddam.
It needs documented. I took a look again at the Mosul link and followed to here:
Article on War Crimes Museum near or in Mosul
"SULAMANIYEH" as the city.
This spelling of places is kicking my butt. I will look for this place on map or maps.
One of the guys from the webpage:
it's the back road between Irbil and Sulumanya... very up and down,
with a couple of large hills, but lovely. A place behind Sulumanya called
Ahmed something is also meant to be pleasant.
I am think on my map it is Arbil. It looks like I need to go east toward Iran and look over the border to say hello.
I am going to buy a better map today if possible.
I made it into the country. Now what? Dohuk is in the center of a big dry spot on the earth surface and surrounded by big brown mountains.
I have this guidebook on Iraq with me. I purchased used from Amazon.com.
It is the Bradt Guide to Iraq. Very good on history. The writer did the 5 star hotel trip as best I can tell, so sort of looks as the Hotel situation as just pay and go.
A Middle Class Guilt perspective.
I must find out what I like.
So far, the most interesting thing is this group of men that are sitting around. I cannot tell what they are doing. For sure they are discussing something. But I did not see the normal excuse to do nothing. Tea, Coffee, or Beer... Maybe eating.
They have on long pants. A long cloth material wrapped around their waist. I would call it a Turbin on their head, but there is probably a proper name. Not that I have time to discover the intricacies of every aspect of a country. Life is too short to study everything. But these men seem distinguished and proper. Like the fathers of the cities, or maybe just the guys hanging around the coffee shop.
My father would do good at this. Hanging around listening at the coffee shop. My father is short on words, but that may be around me. But I am never short on words.
I will try to be diplomatic and very sneaky. I will take a photos.
This group notices everything, so I will have to be especially sneaky.
It is not dangerous. But better to not ask much.
They always recommend you ask. I prefer to sneak a photos.
They often get angry at just the question,
"Can I take a photo."
If you just take a photo like any normal person. They think it is natural and do not care. But if you ask, yes they have a problem. Too complicated for me.
I found a shoe repairman with a electric sewing machine.
I will have my backpack repaired today.
He looked like a good guy also.
The children ask me to take their photo constantly. So if you notice an inordinate amount of photos of groups of children this is why.
The Kurdish words I learned in Silopi, Turkey are of no value.
I was trying to say thank you to the Hotel owner today.
He said he spoke Christian. He speaks a little English and explainded. I did not understand how you can speak Christian. I double checked by putting my hand in front of my face as if to pray. He crossed himself like the Catholics.
Who knows which language to learn.
The Kurdistan people or Iraq people speak more English than the normal Turkish person so this is good.