They don't have much water or food.
They say the British and the Kuwaitis have promised them food but it's not arriving.
They seem to expect a great deal from the forces on the ground.
Some soldiers told me they are often asked for water, when they don't have much either.
But they say that they feel people are beginning to trust them more. They are getting used to seeing them around.
We went to the area some of the forces on the ground are staying in. It was an old hotel with no beds.
There are some journalists there curled up on stone floors with no showers. And I've been complaining about this ship?! No more, I promise!.
We jumped onto our vehicles again and went into the market area.
There isn't much food on sale here. I was mobbed as soon as I got off the vehicle and surrounded by adults and children.
They told me they had no water. "We want water," one man told me, but he looked quite healthy and fairly well-fed.
None of the people I saw were the poorest I had ever seen. They are obviously facing big problems, but they still seem to have at least a little food, unlike others in Iraq who are in a desperate state.
I was surrounded and one of the marines with us later told me he'd been told if there was any sign of trouble, they'd reverse the vehicle up to me and grab me to pull me out.
They are still jittery. Only yesterday one of their vehicles was fired at. But they are trying to show people they are not there to hurt them. And people, they say, seem to believe that.
One man said: "Good the English soldiers. Good for us. For Iraqi, for Arab."
We carried on away from the market to the port. This was where a large aid shipment came in last week. Today it was empty. No ships seem to have followed and the aid, as the people here will tell you, is desperately needed.
We swung back to the British base camp where the helicopter was waiting for us to bring us back to Ark Royal.
It was a quick trip but it gave me an idea of what it's like in Iraq. It made me want to see it again so I can spend longer with the people there to find out what they really think and feel about what is going on in their country.