Thursday, May 01, 2008

Back again

The past 2 weeks have been going at a crazy, tiring pace. Late nights- 0030. Early mornings, like 0415 hours waking up. Going outfield for navex, missions etc.

It kinda strikes me as weird how school-going people can comment on academic life, saying it's crazy and exhausting... etc. Mentally, yes, agreed. But it's really strange how the same few words can mean entirely different things.

Tiring, yet fulfilling somehow.

For me it means doing preparation for outfield training, conducting numerous inspections for my men.

It means donning my green long 4, putting on green camo cream and the 3 black stripes across my face. Putting on my load bearing vests, boots, helmet, field pack. Drawing my SAR 21, loading ammo into my magazine. Moving out for one of those long, tiring infantry marches.

Walking in the hot sun, finding out that my men didn't obey my instructions to bring enough water, regretting the fact that perhaps I could have checked. Seeing my section almost break down during the section proficiency test as the stress level goes up. Doing my best to pull my team together, while becoming increasingly irritated and angry at some of their attitudes.

Shouting and screaming at them to keep the friggin battle formations, attack properly, get proper cover. Seeing them becoming totally exhausted, sweating, muddy, come close to giving up.

Having to manage 6 different, unique persons, with different mindsets and personalities. Each a soldier- my soldier, each a man, each somebody's son. Look after their physical and mental well being, their soldierly bearing, their training in every aspect. Also their growth as people. Have to do what I can for their personal problems, their attitude problems.

Yeah.

And yes, I know God helped me a lot in the test. None of us in my section fell out. Came close, yes, but no it did not happen. That's an immense achievement. Most sections I know of had people who fell out.

Thought I was in one place but was in an entirely different place (300-400 metres away) during navex. Knew that I was getting more and more lost but somehow didn't want to turn back. The logical mind in me kept telling me to back track to a confirmed location. Kept walking and scolding myself for being stupid. And somehow I walked up the correct knoll, saw a station master and by God's divine providence, reached the correct checkpoint. Not by my navigation skills, but by sheer clumsiness, navigational stupidity and stubborness added up, manipulated and changed by God into a correct move.

On another note, saw Iron Man at 1 a.m. this morning. Thought it most excellent.

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