It was ungodly hot yesterday, which made for a brutal 1.5 hour judo class, especially as I'm just starting back, and am still expending a lot of my energy just guarding the not-entirely-healed rib. After class, I stopped over at Franzone's for a couple slices of pizza and ran into some of the guys from the judo class, including our Sensei and his son, whom I haven't seen in 4 years, since he graduated high school. ("Haven't seen you in a while," I said, when we paired up for randori, "You've gotten big." He looked up at me. "You're one of the few people who'd say that.") He's spent the last 4 years, as his father said, "tromping around Iraq and Afghanistan." Now he's out, and heading to college in a couple weeks.
He did 2 tours in Iraq. The first tour, he told us, was pretty low key. They were stationed in a mansion, one of a cluster of mansions belonging to Baath Party members, all seized by the US military during the invasion and used to house special ops troops.
"It was like a big, gay resort," he said. Men in bathing suits lounging around, swimming in the pools, sunbathing, lifting weights, playing volleyball, wrestling. "Not a woman to be seen for miles around."
I'm sure there's a movie of some sort or another to be made of that.