Updated 18-Sep: Welcome to the Schriefer Blog, my name is Tavis Schriefer. Recently, my wife Jill and I raised money to supply driFIRE shirts to every soldier in Apache Company of the 1-501st Parachute Infantry Regiment. We were successful in raising over $6500 and we would like to thank everyone for all their support to make this happen.
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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Stories from Nick

I spoke with Nick this past Friday (3-Nov), sorry just now getting it posted. Nick is doing fine.
Here's another picture of Nick and his squad - of course there always has to be one of them with thier finger up - they can't help themselves.

In the early morning Friday, before Sunrise, a small fire started outside the FOB - they think it was unintentional. Pretty soon a palm tree caught fire and he said it was like a fireball. They were trying to look around the area with their NODS to see if there were any people around, but the fire was too intense and all they saw was white. The locals kept saying that the fire department was coming, but they never showed up - so it just burned. When I spoke with him, it was 10:30PM in Iskan and he said the fire was still smoldering. I guess that was the excitement of the day - at least what he would share. He did say that their base is under attack quite a bit, but he sluffed it off saying "they learn to ignore it".

He also told me about a guy in a row boat (homemade) paddling on the
Euphrates river. The guy was having trouble because he was paddling upstream and the current was pulling him East, towards the FOB. They have orders to shoot anyone reaching the halfway point, so they kept yelling at the guy telling him to go back. He said the guy was paddling and struggling, but just couldn't overcome the current - so finally the guy jumped off the boat and swam back to the Western shore, letting his boat drift on.

Staci sent me a couple pictures that Nick took. One picture is of a bomb that exploaded during one of their missions. He said that the bomb exploded before their convoy got there. The Iraqi military discovered it and apparently detonated it unintentionally. Nick said that they tend to find what they think might be bombs and then they poke at them with sticks to see if they are real (insert your own comments here). He said when his convoy passed, he saw the soldiers getting up from the ground, dazed and walking around it.

Nick said there are dogs everywhere. When they go out on missions, he said that dogs will begin to cluster together and follow the patrol around, barking at them. This is especially dangerous at night. One of the guys was almost attacked recently.
Nick said today was the first day they had hot water since he's been there - and his first bath in 4 days. He said it felt soooo good to take a hot shower.

Nick will be out of contact for the next week or so. They've implemented nighttime curfews in the area - maybe having to do with the Saddam trial, but I don't know. Nick also said that he got my letter, so the address is good. He said they now have a guy handling mail, so a bunch of guys finally got stuff. I will post his address and instructions in a seperate entry.

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