It's the middle of the night here in Kuwait where we landed with our delegation from Move America Forward .
We are already running into some snags from the military end of our efforts to get into Ramadi, which used to be called the 'Triangle of Death' before our counter insurgency plan put into place by General David Petraeus started kicking in with phenomenal results.
Some of the aggregavation is big, some of it's small. No one met us at the airport to transport us to the military base where we are supposed to grab a chopper into Ramadi. Bureaucratic snafus. But I was prepared for that from my previous trip to Iraq in 2005.
Other irritations include limited cellphone, satphone, and wireless abilities to communicate back with you folks.
But we are cofident that we are getting in shortly (next 24 hours) with Debbie Lee, a Gold Star Mom whose son Marc Alan Lee was the first Navy Seal killed in the fighting in Iraq. Debbie is particularly anxious to get to Ramadi, because it is there the military named a camp after her son.
Mary Pearson, our photographer, is busy snapping some great pictures, but she is running low on battery power and we didn't have the proper adapter from the States. I have spent the last several hours scouring our hotel and using sign language to find one.
Danny Gonzalez, our Director of Communications and chief blogger, is sleeping soundly right now. He's good at that!
We have bags of Christmas and Hanukkah cards we are traveling with to give out to our troops along the way. Our last three stops before we flew out generated 38,000 cards and letters that we had to personally pack (and that doesn't include the 20,000 cards and letters from our great KSFO listeners) ...the total from the trip SO FAR is 160,000! And the staff back in Sacramento has thousands more! We could NOT have accomplished the road shipping without the help of the great folks from Gathering of Eagles who turned out a spectacular crowd at Ground Zero in New York. We had military bands, girl scouts, Miss USO sang for us, and we loved every minute of that, especially when we hung a wreath on the fencing protecting the gaping hole in the ground where our towers once stood.
Afterwards, a dozen volunteers came back to our hotel to help us put the cards and letters in priority mail boxes and get it to the post office in time for Christmas delivery. GOE ROCKS.
Except the sleet and freezing tempertures in Philly, Washington and New York, we are all doing great --really inspired, and grateful for the help and support of so many people who love our military men and women.
We are trying very hard to update everybody as soon as we can.
One final thought.
We are meeting many soldiers along the way, in airports and on the streets. All of them are strong, confident, and sure of our mission. I wish the armchair generals back in Washington (yes, I DO mean Nancy Pelosi!) could meet these people.
They are OUR HEROES.
Say a prayer for me, Mary, Debbie and Danny.