You know, I don't miss being bothered constantly by the Afghans...until I'm not. It's been a while now that I've been gone, and I miss my little outpost in the middle of nowhere, where my Afghan soldiers wake me early in the morning to complain about a toothache or to ask to borrow a tool.
As for here near Kabul, it's been a slow but relatively interesting week. Helping out with teaching the Afghans to shoot the M16 has been enlightening. Most of them actually shoot pretty well, though when they are shooting at paper targets they don't really get into it very much. Give them an armored vehicle or a steel bell to shoot at though, and they get excited. The ones that don't shoot well, really don't shoot well. We had a guy miss the entire 2x4 foot target with 15 straight rounds from 25 meters away until we figured out he was using the wrong eye to look through the sights. I had wondered why his head was cocked all weird. It took awhile but we convinced him he'd be better off shooting using his right eye if we were going to shoot right-handed.
The training done here is run by civilian contractors. I'm just here to learn a bit and then go back and train the rest of our battalion. All the trainers are former military, usually infantry or SF. They're a cocky bunch, competent and entertaining to be around with all manner of funny stories from around the world, although the amount of hours they put in working is pretty sparse given their salaries. Spending time with them has been educational for me on many levels. The contractors tend to curse and yell at the Afghans more than I do when I'm doing training back "home", but then these guys can get away with it because they don't have to live with the ANA the way I do; I'm a bit reluctant to anger my Afghans too much, considering my life is really in their hands.
Civilian contracting certainly seems like a pretty good gig if you can get it since these guys really aren't working very many hours for the ridiculous amount of money they make, though I'm not sure I would want to run rifle ranges all the time. Of course, not all these guys run rifle ranges - plenty of other opportunities exist for all manner of specialties.