From the Soldier side: One night in Iraq....Baghadad to be exact.... There I was on Camp (XXXXX) when I had to walk in the pitch black from my room to the "office." The camps did not have any lights on outside the buildings for obvious reasons (well, if you can't figure it out, no lights outside so the insurgents couldn't zero in on us with a sniper shot or something.)
So, it was really, really, really dark outside. I tried to not use my flash light because I didn't want anyone outside the camp to be able to see me... So I was walking along...it was only about 1,000+ meters to the office...no big deal.
I had my M9 9mm pistol in a hip holster, my Emerson CQ7 folding knife, and two 15 round mags for my pistol. I also had a Surefire flash light, but I was trying to not use it.
There was nobody else in the area...the guard tower was over 2,000 meters away...on the wall facing outside the camp into Baghdad. Did I mention that it was really, really, really dark outside? Well, it was dark.
As I got closer to the office, I could suddenly sense something near me....looking at me. At first I thought it was one of the Lads screwing around with me...then I realized that the breathing was not human. It was also a lot lower to the ground that any human.....holly shit...what was it?
I reached for my M9 9mm pistol in the hip holster while I pulled a magazine with my other hand...I wish I had a third hand for the flashlight....but I didn't. I slammed a mag into the pistol pretty fast, pulled the slide back and racked a round into the chamber...flipped the safety to "fire" and then pulled out my flashlight to see what it was.
It had eyes that glowed in the dark...it had a growl that sounded like a werewolfvampirebearmonsterthing.
It was a big dog, part dingo, part wolf, part jackel, part rat. I don't know what the hell kind of dog it was...but it scared the shit out of me. It stopped, looked at me and my pistol, and ran away so I didn't have to kill it.
Even though we were not supposed to carry loaded guns on that camp, after that, at night, I carried a locked and loaded pistol with me all the time. Screw the rules where there's critters like that.
Have a happy Holloweeen...and if you're one of those who are offened by this great holiday, guess what.....