I am officially a civilian again. After a year with California's 40th Infantry Division, and a long week at Fort Lewis, we were released to our families for Thanksgiving.
And I am thankful to be away from the 40th.
A wonderfully talented unit form North Dakota has replaced us in Kosovo, so the mission in the Balkans is in good hands. You won't be seeing any more KFOR Files or Peacekeeper Videos.
But I still have plenty to write about. The blog will go on.
I have been doing a lot of thinking about the transition from Army to civilian life. Among my many mental strolls is education. I will begin teaching again soon, and I can't help but ponder, and celebrate, the distinct teaching model that dominates many good schools in the SF Bay Area. Contrasting that is the poorer Army model, so as I reintegrate in civilian teaching, many topics will beg to be blogged upon.
Another thought: I live in Oakland, a fairly dangerous city, by most measures, and I go about my business daily without a reflective belt, Kevlar helmet, or reporting to a headquarters. I'm fine. It makes me wonder why Soldiers are treated like toddlers when they assume the most challenging responsibilities.
Let me reconsider that last statement. I have a toddler (and one of the highlights of returning home is getting to know him). I don't denigrate him for every misstep and expect him to stand still until I get the count right. So Soldiers are often treated like babies, except without the fawning.
A final thought: President Obama has made the pitch to send more troops to Afghanistan. I will not comment on this blog. Politics has its own place, and if you're interested in my political views, visit my website and follow the links to my ChronWatch posts.
Check back weekly for some upbeat posts. I am happy to be home.