Before we took this place from the Taliban, this place had a small stretch of asphalt road, concrete runway and taxiways, and a lot of dust laying on the ground just waiting for a breeze. This is a desert, but there isn’t a whole lot of sand. Mostly dust. Over this dust the Americans have laid gravel. Big gravel. Fist-sized, ankle-twisting, tank trail gravel. Somebody had to make this gravel from rocks and haul it here or all we would have to walk on is dust. Walking on this stuff was a trial for me when I first got here. You can tell who the FNG’s are, they are the ones walking with their heads down, studying the ground in front of them.
Several truck loads of small gravel have been dumped in my neighborhood, graded and rollered, and the difference is amazing. You can actually walk to the shithouse in flipflops and not hurt your feet. It feels like civilization. I think I will judge a camp by the size of its gravel.