I was guest speaker at one of the local Woman’s Clubs yesterday with my presentation of, “Inadvertent Pioneer”. This was in honor of Veterans Day. That presentation is focused on the transition time of 1974 thru 1995 when significant changes took place for women and I happened to be part of it through a series of circumstances.
Anyway, this presentation always stirs memories of different parts of my career. As I’ve posted before, my husband and I were with Second Corps Support Command (2d COSCOM) under the VII Corps for Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He was moved to the newly established Task Force Bennett and I stayed with the COSCOM Headquarters. In practical terms that meant he was further forward in the desert than I was and we did see each other briefly occasionally when our duties overlapped. During the main part of our deployment, we did have some trailers as office space at the headquarters (we did move three times I think it was before we folded into King Khalid Military City after Hussein surrendered). Most of the headquarters was in tents; the large ones for mess hall, operations, etc., – smaller ones for living. One of the things we had to get used to were the sudden, violent dust storms that would appear in the same way squalls do. We often saw towering “dust devils” in the distance which were interesting to observe. The type of storm I’m talking about would appear with little notice from a clear, hard blue sky. Think of one of the large tents like you see at events except instead of open sides, the sides are down and pegged into the ground. Now think of that same tent being literally snatched up a few feet off the ground, twisted and set back down, partially collapsed. The storms rarely lasted more than maybe ten minutes and weren’t always that intense. Everything was obscured though and you certainly didn’t want to be outside without protection. As far as I know, no one ever got hurt, but cleanup always took a while.