Thanksgiving in Iraq

Like I said last time, I am now here at Joint Base Balad, Iraq.   We arrived on Tuesday this past week.  It’s good to finally be here after spending 2 and 1/2 months in pre-deployment training.  Come to think of it, I was notified of the deployment the first week of August, started training full time on Sept. 13, 2008, and only this week, two days before Thanksgiving, actually arrived in theater.

First of all, let me assure you that we are totally safe here.  The base is about 25 square miles large, which is huge, and there is a massive airfield here.  They have not had a single mortar or rocket attack since I arrived, and it’s been six months since anyone was hurt on this base.  They have 35,000 personnel here, and the borders of this base have high fences, dirt berms, and armed guards everywhere, so like I said, it is probably this safest place to be in Iraq.

I do have a mailing address.  It is:

MAJ Brian Nomi
HHC 3rd ESC (SJA, SFC Hibbs)
APO AE 09391
You have to write it exactly as it appears above, and the US Postal Service will deliver it right to me.  I don’t think I need anything special right now, so no need to send me any care packages.

I’m working in the legal office, and so far I’m delighted with the office, and the work I’ll be doing.  I even ran into a guy that I knew in Korea when I worked at that legal office (1996-1997), and was happy to see him working with me again here in Iraq.  Everyone is very nice, and I’m probably working in the nicest office in the nicest base in Iraq, doing exactly the kind of work I like to do.

They had a special meal, and the turkey and related dishes were absolutely delicious! I went with a group of my new friends at the legal office.  They had high ranking officers serving the meal, and several people were dressed up in turkey costumes, pilgrim costumes, indian costumes, and football jerseys.  Prime rib seasoned to perfection, several types of tasty stuffing and everything else you can imagine. The finest meal I’ve had in quite a long time, and we all ate until we hurt ourselves.

Internet access is very limited here, and today it rained, which caused the internet to slow to a crawl.  So I’m lucky to be able to even post this, let alone photos.  Next time, I’ll make sure to add some pictures.  Bye for now!


4 Responses

  1. More photos please! Glad your safely there.

  2. Hey, Brian:

    I was wondering what kind of legal work you’re doing. Are you doing anything related to dealing with the Iraqi citizenry, or is it more like what any lawyer in a small city would be doing, only with all of the clients being US military?

    Best wishes and thanks,


  3. Am VERY happy that place is no longer earning it’s former nickname, “Mortaritaville”! That’s GREAT news! Be safe!

  4. Just to let you know that is not a Stryker, it is an Armored Security Vehicle.

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