Monday, January 26, 2009


(Winter rain)

Not much to write home about today. It’s been raining (picture #1). Khost, Afghanistan is on a plateau of sorts surrounded by multiple mountain ranges. Just north of it is Tora Bora which stands 14,200 ft tall. Therefore, it has its own eco-system. This is very nice for us, as in most of Northern Afghanistan the weather is cold and snowy, for us it is much milder. It’s 50 – 60 degrees during the day, thirties at night. Instead of snow, we see rain. When it rains, the Taliban and other radicals don’t like to work, so we have a lot of downtime. I guess I should consider this a blessing, except for the fact that it makes the time go by a lot slower. It did give me time for a haircut (picture #2). Hopefully, the clinic will begin to get busier as well. I did perform an inguinal hernia repair on a small 6 year old boy last week. It went well and I will see him in clinic next week for follow-up. I have spoken to many of the local doctors and have told them to start bringing me patients. They state that there are several who are undergoing a work-up and will come to clinic soon.

Otherwise, I’ve tried to fill my time with books, movies, and TV shows. There all over the place here. I brought an external hard-drive and already have multiple seasons of shows as well as hundreds of videos. In regards to books, I finished “Deep Survival” by Laurence Gonzales. This was recommended to my by Dr. McGreevy last spring. It’s a wonderful book about the psychology behind people who survive harrowing situations. I’m currently reading “Ghost Wars” by Steve Coll. It is a book about “the secret history of the CIA, Afghanistan, and Bin Laden, from the Soviet invasion to September 10, 2001.” I’ll let you know what I think. I’m also trying to refresh my memory and learn different aspects of trauma surgery. I’ll never know what will come into the trauma bay, so I’m trying to prepare myself as much as I can.

(Boot leg copies)

There is a “Haji” mart on base where locals come and peddle their goods. I will write more about this and include pictures in a future post. It was raining when I went today, so it wasn’t out in it’s full glory. You can get anything there; from Afghan rugs, to knockl-off Rolex watches, to recently released movies (picture #3). I picked up “Slumdog Millionaire” for 3 dollars. I’m not sure on the quality of the film yet. The other day I watched “Step-Brothers” with Will Ferrell. It was an obvious boot leg copy made by someone in a movie theatre as I could hear the audience laughing, eating popcorn, and at one point someone stood up. Nice. Life remains good here in Camp Salerno. I’m just enjoying the lull before the storm. When the weather warms up, I’ll wish for days like today. Take care.

(Medevac Helicopter)


  1. love the "do"! and I'm really looking forward to the DVD library we will have when you get home. :*

  2. Yea, I always loved the nasty weather... the bad guys don't like to fight in it so it usually meant a night of uninterrupted sleep.

    Take care Steve!