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July 5, 2010

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When it comes to long-term care, THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME. A good thing about Long-Term Care Insurance from State Farm'* is that you have your choice of care Options - including in your home. You'll also be helping to protect your life savings from the cost of extended care. To learn nmre about it, just talk to your neighbortmod State Farm agent. Powell Insurance Agcy Inc Deron Powell, Agent Mt Pulaski, IL 62548 Bus: 217-792-3371 A GOOD NEIGEtB  STATE FARM IS Providing Insurance and Finan Services slletam .rcm] " * *State Farm MutualAulomobih In.s'mce (mpa',, Ile Office: [}toomingion. Ittinois See yam local Slale Fm Agent for detads on covtv age, costs, reslrictions and renewability, LTQ200208 P02460 04)5 [JOHNSON HARDWARE & GARDENS s'mr.lcm, sT^..m." Full Service Hardware Store & Greenhouse Local Friendly Service Open 7 Days a Week Man. - Fri. 7:30Am - 6Pro Independently Owned & Operated . Sat. 7:30Am - 5Pro Sun. lOAm - 3Pro 423 S. Washington St..- Mt. Pulaski 792-5911 24/7 ,i AUTOMATIC POWER PROTECTION Protect the things that matter most, Buy a Guardian Standby Generator between now and July 31, 2010 and SAVE $200! Have power when the power goes out with our Guardian* Standby Generators When the power goes out.., and it will... You can depend on our Guardian Standby Generators for automatic back-up power J Fully Automatic J 24/7 Protection e Permanently Installed  Better Than Portables Dave Bassett John Wyss 105 E. Jefferson St. - North Side of Square Mt. Pulaski lic. #058-12-1898 792 593 Scott Tatein Afghanistan Scott is a former Mr. Pulaski resident and graduated from Mr. lot to be desired and food poison- Pulaski High School. He now works in Kabul, Afghanistan for a ing is common. People I worked contractor that provides construction management support to the with got sick but fortunately my U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Scott is keeping a diary of sorts of his work, travel, and the people he meets... This is his second installment. Along the Silk Road By Scott Tate Some are born with a keen sense of observation, while others recog- nize this shortcoming in them and spend a lifetime trying to see what seems obvious to the rest. While you might not be a fan of country music or of the late singer songwriter Tom T. Hall, there's some wisdom for the taking by lis- tening to the words in his songs or simply looking at an unknown source's opinion of Tom. Someone once said that, "some people can travel around the world and not see a thing. Tom T. Hall can walk down a dirt road and see the world." Here are a few roads I've been down lately and I think you'll be surprised at what I saw. After arriving in Afghanistan last year, my first trip was to a job site in Kunduz, which is located near the northern border of the country. Traveling in Afghanistan is not like traveling anywhere else. Com- bined with the fact that this is a country at war, it is also very rugged. Between security risks and the mountainous terrain much of our travel is done by air versus land On top of that, when you go to an outlying area, fight schedules are erratic and much more prone to weather than the commercial flights we know in the U.S. Led by NATO, the flights are handled by ISAF (International Security Assistance Force). If it even looks like rain, these pilots won't fly. It was on this trip that I enjoyed my first flight on a C130. Developed in the 1950s, these are the big cargo and crew haul- ers with a loading ramp in the back big enough to load and haul vehicles. These were built with functionality in mind and not pas- senger comfort. Strapped into a canvas bench-like seat there is no such thing as first class. Want a window seat? All the windows are well above your head when you sit down so once the plane starts take- off, orientation to be right with your sur'ounding is another chal- lenge. The day when we departed Kabul, the flight crew became Con- vinced the Taliban had a radar lock on us so we went through a series of erratic dives and climbs that made us all wish we hadn't eaten for the previous 3 days. By the time we finally landed at our interim stop in Mazar-e Sharif we all felt like we had passed the first step in NASA training towards our astronaut degrees. Besides that we were able to teach each other sign language on this flight since ear- plugs were a necessity unless you enjoy the deafening roar of the engines. After a brief pit stop at the German run NATO air base in Mazar-e Sharif it was a short flight to Kunduz. The Kunduz airport only believes in the basics. To keep the overhead low they believe in no air conditioning and outside rest- room facilities. It has probably not seen any paint since the Russians occupied it back in the 80s. The Germans run both the air- port and the NATO base in Kunduz. Each of their jeeps is proudly designated by a woman's name painted on the hood. Kunduz is the first time I was privileged to sleep in a tent with a wooden floar. It was not the dirt floor and army cot experience that I had envisioned. The Germans are very neat and orderly. Appar- ently a trait I didn't inherit from my full-blooded German paternal grandmother. You might wonder about the food served in Kunduz. It was indeed all-German, but not the glamorous wiener schnitzel and sauerbraten dishes one would imagine in a German establish- ment. If you like a lot ofbreadiand cold salads you could get by. Fresh fruit was a luxury; cold cuts]and cheeses a breakfast staple. One American I knew there basically lived on Pop Tarts from home. Many of the Americans I met iron stomach was untouched. One of the bright spots in Kunduz was the stars at night. With no lights or pollution to diminish the sky, the stars were more vis- ible than you can imagine. They appeared big enough and close enough to pick them from the sky. Ok, not bright enough to provide you a picture, but you get the idea. Another positive to staying at a German run NATO base is the Brew Haus. The Germans don't believe in tee totaling at their .bases like the Americans so German beer was readily avail- able in the bar or the PX. Since the food is so bad it was their subtle way of offering optional calories. The biggest attraction at Kunduz is the rose gardens and turtle areas. Each permanent housing unit is arranged with a center courtyard where they grow roses with blooms bigger than a man's fist and are patrolled by guard tur- tles. The turtles are all fed and watered and have their own houses. It's a tossup if the roses or the turtles have better care. Now you might wonder what the area outside of the base is like. At the time I was there last year, it was known that the Taliban occupied the valley below because of its agricultural resources. Now those military incidents haste increased in the area, security is height- ened. Although even before the attacks in this area last fall made the world more aware of Kunduz, travel to job-sites was only done with armed guards and two vehi- cles moving in tandem. The areas of Kunduz where the airport and NATO base are located are up on a plateau. Last May on my first visit, the heat of the summer had not yet arrived so the lushness of the wheat fields and flora in the below were still green from the sparse spring rains. When we started out on this epi- logue, it looked like it might be another geography lesson. Did you ever think someone would tell you who go there; first arrived with a a story with Tom T. Hall, Afghani- healthy pudginess only to return stan, Germans, roses, turtles, and months later gaunt and looking sheep? All conne'cted by one long road. Until next time, I'll be looking as if they have survived a Weight for more stories to share with you Watcher's camp for anorexics. Food handling techniques leave a along the Silk Road. "WHERE is my SUNDAY paper?!" The irate customer calling the newspa- per office. "Madam", said the newspaper employee, "today is Saturday. The Sunday paper is not delivered until tomorrow, on SUNDAY". There was quite a long pause on the other end of the phone, followed by a ray of recognition as she was heard to mutter, "Well, ####, so that's why no one was at church today." At Horsefeathers inElkhart Delicious Home Cooking at its Best! Offering Scrumptious Lunches Tuesday - Sunday 11-2.'30 Daily Specials - Seasonal Dishes Reservations & Credit Cards Accepted Horsefeathers Antique & Gift Shop 10Am to 4Pm Tues. - Sun. 104 Governor Oglesby st 947-2100 6 E" t t | p.a