Friday, January 07, 2005

Ziggurat of Ur

Had some trouble sleeping, mostly due to aircraft. Went back to CE, read through the regs to determine power requirements but there are too many options for a good answer. Met with some more people after a big lunch. But the highlight of the day was visiting the Ziggurat of Ur just before lunchtime.
The ziggurat is really a big pile of dirt with a brick facade.

Ziggurat of Ur
Since it was outside the wire, we had our vests and helmets on. Drove through a set of arches that Saddam had allegedly hung his base commander from (Tallil was abandoned after Gulf War I because it was in the no-fly zone).
The not-so-golden arches
When we got to the gate for the ziggurat, there were a half-dozen army vehicles there. Took a few pics and then got halfway up the stairs when we saw "our security" drive off.

Um...
Also wandered through the adjacent ruins said to be the house of Abraham, but we couldn't tell which one it was.
This picture's probably not worth 1,000 words. But I didn't count.

This old house?
The Italians & Portuguese showed up and I took some pictures for them, guns waving and looking fierce. Stopped at the gift shop (yes, there's a gift shop). I bought a couple of knives and a red shemagh.

It seemed fairly safe where we were, but I kept seeing up-armored HUMMVs and semis with steel welded outside the doors headed north. The downside  was that my camera battery died (or started to) just as we got to the ziggurat, so I was somewhat sparing on taking too many. Back on base, I got a cherry slushie and played bingo with maybe 100 people. Still didn't win, but I got within one square a few times. Overall, it doesn't seem like a bad place to be. Lots of work to be done, just pick something. I've also been getting more sleep here than in Qatar.

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