Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Morning Calm Musings........

Another banner trip for moi! I get here, my luggage does not. Made the ride down from ICN lighter, but $158 dollars later I had at least another set of clothes ( and more importantly underwear) to change into. Plus my heavy winter jacket was in my suitcase. Thank goodness, as Mark pointed out, the weather is cold, but not so bad this week.

My hat is off to the Korea dwellers. Lost Nomad, Mark, GI Korea, and Jennifer and the rest. Seems as if it takes a hardy stock to live here. Japan seems down right civilized. This is only the second time in 5 years I have been here and the last trip was only for 24 hours.

During my clothes shopping -something I never do without the S.O. along, she is my style consultant and points out"what goes with what"- I wandered into the book section and picked up a copy of Robert Kaplan's book, Imperial Grunts, my second book to be read this year........

While perusing it I cam across the following quotes, that maybe the folks at USNA might have wanted to study before they both went off the deep end:

In the Armies of the Raj, British military historian Byron Farwell writes
that opening the Suez Canal, by allowing the wives of British military officersin India to convienently join their husbands, cut the officers off from native society, and became one of the contributing factors leading to the Indian mutiny of 1857-1858 against British Rule. " In all societies women have been the conservators of culture," Farwell explains. "When British women began to arrive in India in numbers, they brought with them British attitudes, British fashions, and British morality(emphasis mine); they were soon imposing their ideas, standards, and customs on the new environment". Consequently, British soldiers, many of whom preferred to be orientalized themselves (like Skippy) rather than Christianize the Indians, now no longer went native, and a new divide opened between them and the locals.

Despite the inaccuracies of Kaplan's and Farwell's timeline- the Suez did not open till 1869- the sentiment is correct. It struct me as an apt analogy for what is going on at USNA today.

Meetings have been so-so. I have to remember I am on USAF turf, people don't always thinks as they should. However they fold soon enough once you make them realize: a) your right and b) you have some negotiating strength because your boss will back you up...( I hope....).

Made the ritual excursion into Songtan, but was so afraid I'd stumble into a off limits place, it kept me away from all the joints that really looked interesting. Settled for some beers, buying a leather jacket, and went back by 9:30 pm. What a revolting development. Actually in bed by 11 on a trip. I'm a disgrace to all members of the Pub Club!

Damn USAF computers don't allow access to blogger! Or very few other blogs for that matter. Guess its the way to keep independent thought down in the light blue service. Its been keeping me from reading Odell's guest blogging over at Hemlock though. Just when it was getting interesting; as it seems Odell is a guy I need to meet:

A guy going on a business trip to Bangkok who doesn't get laid is a liar, or a freakin pervert. 99% anyway. The difference is some of them get caught, and some don’t. How do the smart ones get away with it?, that's the question, right?

So I'm writing a book based on my experience and my buddies experience. Hemlock, God bless him, has actually suggested a title. "The Invisible Scumbag, Every Hong Kong Man's Guide to Living Life to the Full While Maintaining Connubial Bliss." Hem also suggests a fake cover for the book, so you can leave it on the shelf without your wife picking it up and looking at it. He says 'Deer Hunting on Motorbike with Tiger Woods' might work but umm..

Funny stuff!

Few more days here so anyone with liberty suggestions, I'm all ears! Just no kimichi or canine culinary treats ok? I'm still not as well as I should be.

Sure hope my bag shows up.........No news is not good news!


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