Iraq Blog - September 2008
DAYS 9 & 10
We could feel that the tour was coming to a bittersweet end. We arrived back at Ali Al Saleem in Kuwait at about 8:30 in the morning and after receiving our clearance to leave the base, Brody’s comforting face greeted us outside. We said our goodbyes to Louie, Arif, and Karim and then hopped on the Mitsubishi van for the ride back to Arifjan. Although extremely sleep deprived, the hour and half journey was spent goofing around and reminiscing about the surreal and incredible week that had just passed.
We ate, rested, and cleaned up at Arifjan and then headed to the airport, driving through yet another sandstorm. Checked in for the flight and grabbed a group dinner at a decent pizza joint. Johnny was stopped going through security as his drum stick back was an item of curiosity. He promptly took out his sticks and brushes, laid down a sultry beat, and got a good laugh out of the security guards.
The whole gang was on the same flight to Frankfurt and then we’d split from up from there. The band was headed back to Austin via Washington DC and Ben, Matt, and Joey to Los Angeles. So what better way to say our goodbyes than in a German airport bar at six in the morning, with four or five hours until the next flight!
The trip was a life changing experience for us all. Regardless of our political views or stance on the war in Iraq, we know that what we did was rewarding for us as individuals and as a band. The patience, flexibility, and dedication of the Fantasmas shined more than ever. Much respect and love to all the servicemen and women overseas. Thanks for coming out the shows and we hope that we brought a little bit of relief to your stressful days. Come home safely!
Last but not least…
*A VERY special thank you to Mr. Dwayne Ulloa and the amazing and uber-professional staff at AKA Productions. We appreciate you not only sending us on this great voyage, but also for taking so much time to prepare us for the trip.
*Ben Adamson and Matthew Hulet our AKA tour managers. Let’s do it again fellas!
*Our wonderful escorts and hosts at Arifjan, Speicher, Al Asad, and Taqqadum. Rock out.
*Griper our soundguy for all his contributions to this blog. Hey bro.
*Brody, Louie, Karim, Arif and Coaxial Sound for all your help and efforts to make the trip run smoothly.
*Our wives, significant others and families. Thanks for your eternal patience and letting us have this amazing experience!
And now, a final word from Mr. Joey Medina