Ateneo De Naga high school 1980

Those who do not remember history are bound to live through it again.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A letter from Reggie Reclusado from Afghanistan

Padi,

These pictures were taken during our 3-day training for Quality Control Managers back in February 23rd thru 25th in Qalla, Kabul , Afghanistan . Most of my classmates are from Pakistan and India . There are two other Filipinos who attended the training and they are the two guys sitting on my right during our group picture.
All who attended the training work in different places in Afghanistan . I am fortunate to be stationed at Bagram Airfield because it is considered to be the safest among all the base camps in the country. Bagram Airfield is also the biggest US Military Camp in Afghanistan.

Normally, we traveled to and from Kabul on a US military C-130. The round trip only takes 30 minutes (15 minutes each way). During our training last February though, the transportation plans were changed and we had to travel by land. It was my first time to travel by road in Afghanistan and the travel time from our base to Kabul takes about 45 minutes.

During the training, we stayed at Camp Anjuman in Kabul where our sub-office Environmental Chemical Construction International (ECCI) is located. We always wore armored vests and traveled with armed military escorts whenever we go to Qalla house located 30 minutes away from Kabul. All along the way, we always encounter traffic due to the numerous military check points. Local military forces implements a very tight security precaution due to occasional attacks by the suicide bombers.

One day during our training, we were scheduled to return to Bagram at 8am. Instead, we left at 10am because there was an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) that exploded on the road between Bagram and Kabul. Fortunately, the bomb that exploded was placed on the other side of the road. Though we were lucky that day, the danger still lingers on the road that we travel. The only weapon and protection I have here in Afghanistan are my prayers and yours too.

As I pen this letter, the date of my R&R (Rest and Recreation) is just less than two weeks away. We are entitled to a 15-day rest & recreation every three months. We really need this break because there are no leisure places to roam around inside our camp. Ang libangan ko na lang ay ang makinig ng music while doing my paper work inside my room. May television naman sa bawat room namin but I prefer not to watch because it distracts me from finishing up my work.

Reggie.

3 Comments:

Blogger K said...

Thank you, Reggie, for sharing your pictures that capture your work environment. Although we have never met, we send our prayers as fellow Ateneans for your safety and return to your family.

9:17 AM  
Blogger Susing said...

Reggie, I really felt so bad about your situation there at Afghanistan, of all the places, why the hell ikaw pa ang nandyan, as death is just around the corner...You're indeed so lucky... and I guess we should really include you in our prayers for us to insure your 100% safety... So ingat ka na lang and I wish that all the luck in life be yours...

Pero please lang Padi, myentras buhay ka pa, maghali ka na dyan! Gusto mo ba kaming mamatay sa nerbyos?

10:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reggie,

While reading your article, I cannot help but imagine the sights and scenes that you go through daily while in Afghanistan. I am an avid military historian and I have watched countless shows in the military channel showing how the soldiers live in Iraq, Afghanistan and other middle eastern countries. I am hoping that I would spot you in one of their shows.

I have not had the privilege of working in a country in the Middle East but what I do know is that the experience can change one's prospective in life.

You are indeed right in believing that prayer to our God is the best protection that you can wear to deflect any harm that would come your way while you travel through the dangerous roads of Afghanistan.

Be assured that I will pray for your safe return to your family. R&Rs are precious benefits to workers employed abroad.

11:16 AM  

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