It was, by all intents and purposes, an Only Ones love fest.
The citizenship ceremony was nice. Always good to see people who care enough to officially contribute and sign the guest book after they come here to enjoy what the Once Great Republic still has to offer. Perhaps a light does indeed still shine.
I had three little ones in tow – this being Mrs. Matson’s morning out.
We bantered with the local constabulary, and made some ARES contacts. Watched as my oldest scared the SAR guys with her ability to track animals and humans almost as good as their dogs. She really creeped them out with the, “I can start a fire with my knife and a firesteel” bit. She’s 7.
Eventually we wandered over to a group of folks who were dressed in the typical dotgov field uniform of 5.11 pants with navy polos. Both of the guys had beer guts, but hey, I guess you get what you get with these kinds of things.
They had a table full of gear- hazmat suits, radiation measuring gear, chemical detection, etc. Tens of thousands of dollars worth of stuff along with a very new unmarked, navy Suburban with a satellite dish.
We sauntered up and they very happily started their act…
“Hello sir! And aren’t you cute little lady! You seem to have your hands full!”
“Uh, huh. Good livin’. What do you guys do?”
“We are a BLAH-BLAH-Acronym-BLAH-BLAH unit. We handle hazmat, nuke-cu-ler (i shit you not), biological, and chemical threats for metro Atlanta and surrounding areas. We are based out of Dobbins and are a GA National Guard Unit. We have capability to BLAH-BLAH-BLAH-BLAH bad stuff – you know, to prevent or mitigate a terrorist attack.”
“Uh, huh. Is that a real pressing issue here? That Suburban have secure VoIP and data ability? How about secure HF comms and the like? That dish from those people in Marietta that got sued last year over their patent infringements? Probably a Cisco 3800 series with a FW module in it. That a 7965 phone on the console there?”
“I uh. Hey, how do you?”
“Nevermind. Come on girls. Glad you are out there pal.”
Spent a few minutes with a former SEAL. I’ve met a few in my life before. Really interesting characters. We exchanged contact info, and I asked if I could buy him a coffee sometime and pick his brain. Seemed like a pretty good guy.
The girls really dug the helicopters.