The military is very serious about ensuring people are accountable for equipment issued to them. Indeed, my third day here, I signed a form to take possession of my two desktop computers AND a 2008 Chevy Trailblazer with only 6500 km on it.
They do that on the same form here. Actually, in my five years in the military, I’ve never signed for a government vehicle on the same form as a computer.
It’s not so bad. The air conditioning works really well… a must out here. There’s also a single-disc CD player, but it occasionally jams because of all the dust/dirt around here. Sometimes you have to use your ID card to get the CDs out.
So, obviously keeping it clean is a problem. The government has a vehicle care contract out here, which includes a car wash.
Let me describe the car wash. It’s manned by two locals who spray your car with hoses. Those hoses are hooked up to a large water tank with a pump. It’s not just any water tank, though. It’s “gray water,” which is a fancy term for “we’ve cleaned the toilet water about as good as it’s going to get and will now find other uses for it.”
These guys get the car fairly clean, but it always ends up smelling like wet dog afterwards. By the time I get back to my office, it’s dirty again. Such is life…
For the curious, there are three types of water here.
- Potable Water – You can drink it, shave with it, cook with it, etc.
- Gray Water – Waste water that’s been treated but is not consumable.
- Black Water – Waste water of questionable smell and consistency often found in toilets after use.
Coincidentally, I signed for a cell phone on my fourth day and lost it by day seven. Haven’t lost the car yet.