:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 8 : Week 6 Of 9 ::

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We had a well rested weekend book out rest. I finally took the courage to tell my buddy what I did during the SIT test in the middle of the night while everyone was a sleep. I peed at the tree beside our tent haha!!

We were laughing about it. Of course his first reaction was, ‘WHAT THE F@#$!’. But it was all so funny. I mean you expect me, the princess wannabe, to walk 10 tents away about 100 metres to the laterin! No way. I was gonna burst anytime and the tree seemed a perfect location at that point of time. And so we moved on from the joke I had to share with him.

We sleep fairly well but before we did we prepared ourselves to go for the urban operations. And of all the boys I was chosen to be the Platoon I/C for the week. Gosh didn’t I just do this I thought. And my commander was like I haven’t seen you lead before. I gave him the look of ” Maybe you need to up your spectacle degree dude!!”. I mean whatever. I took it up.

It was fun the next day. We headed out with the weather telling us it wasn’t going to be an all that sunny day. But we were lucky the weather didn’t really come in till mid through the ops.

Now let me tell you about the amazing journey we had towards the area. As usual we we drove to a silent empty room. An island that is abandon. The only buzzling jolt of the area are mostly from nature itself. We finally pass through the entrance of where we would gather for the breifing.

It was an abandon town, built specially for the usage and to act as a urban area for our training purpose. Of course, it was the first for almost everyone of us. You can just here the curious whispers of the people you. Making small jokes about the names of the shop that were given.

We took off a few minutes after the breifing and after we did our water parade. Our journey include an amazing abandon Palm platation. Probably the last in Singapore. I was just truly amazing. I never have been to or seen one in Singapore. And then we headed to the real training ground. Nothing really special though. Just the same as the first point. Just more run down and lots of graffities.

I mean of course you would go around reading almost all of them. I mean there were lots of goods and bads. But I guess the whole point of graffiti is to ink out memories of a certain moment.

And as the storm slowly weathered in, we had a little celebration again for our OC. The commanders got cakes and we the recruits got Barley drinks as a treat. It was good enough I guess.

The week was fairly short as we got back the lost days for training as Off-in-lieu. We did somehow did a lot of reflection on how the training was thus far and what we where we see ourselves for the remaining time in NS. Well I had my goals but some are just not meant to be.

Book out was becoming less more of what we were looking forward to as we all started to bond, we felt that staying together a bit longer wouldn’t kill. And knowing grenade throwing was coming up on our next book in, anticipation of what was coming keep us not wanting to let each other go.

Mkie.

:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 7 : Week 5 Of 9 ::

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Week 5 of 9!

SIT test week. This is where they tes t you on your leadership, endurance and mentality. I think of the 3 they focus the most on your mentality. How strong you can be after being drench physically.

Haha! I can admit honestly, I didn’t take this test seriously because like I sadi I have absolutely no interest in suffering any further after my recruit days.

I was a total wreck. They had to do this thing where you had to tie your rope. I mean whatever right, I don’t know what in the world I was doing. So I had all the wayang kings do all the work and I just step aside and be the princess that I am.

But the whole thing was fun. Especially when we had to do some rescue. And me being one of the 3 big guy in the team had to do all the power lifting. I was literally laughing when I had to pull my friend up the mini building.

But the highlight would be what happen at night. Deep when everyone was sleeping haha! When I was too lazy to walk like all the way to the back of the convoy and head to the laterine. So I did what every desperate person would. I peed right beside my tent haha! With the help of a very big tree!

It was so much fun! And there was one time when it was my turn to carry the matador. So when I lifted it, I was like no way and I gonna run 2km with this shit on my back. Thank god for all the wayang kings. So be smart for those of you who don’t wanna be commaders!

The highlight of week 5 was the OC’s night. It was fill with a lot of joy and laughter. Something particularly rare considering the situation we were in. But I guess we should be thankful that we can have those little moments that leave a footprint on a long and challenging journey.

It was a definately a special night for our OC. Because we were the last batch he was taking in his BMTC journey. It was so fun as I said. We had a campfire! Something I don’t get to experience every other year.

The rest of the week was just all about passing our SOC and IPPT. Week 6 will bring a new challenge because we are heading to the urban operations!

Mkie.

:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 6 : Week 4 Of 9 ::

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Picture courtesy of the Mindef.

 

We finally had to book in. The celebration for Hari Raya was keep extremely short. But I was thankful that I managed to get to spend it with my family.

This was the week. FIELD CAMP!

The week every recruit awaits during their BMTC life. We got all our stuff ready before we book in. Of course a typical himbo like me wouldn’t know a thing what my Sergeant told me. But thank god my buddy is the silent killer that he is. I was truly blessed.

So the night before the field camp, the bunk was filled with anxiety and fear, completely normal I guess. Of course the wayang warriors were preparing themselves to show how good they were.

Day one begins. We march 12km to our camp site. Gosh it was madness. Up the hill and down the slope. Rocky terrains. But it was all worth the suffering. It let you appreciate the walk you could have taken everyday from home to the supermarket. Filled only with a flat pathway!

The rest of day one was filled with psychological torture, well in fact the entire field camp was filled with psychological torture. This would seperate the strong and the weak. And it definately showed.

We had to built our own tent, the one we have learnt to built the week before. Of all the things that was the easiest to do on Day one would be building the tent!

The day eneded short for all 5 days. We mostly ended our activities after 7pm.

Day 2-4 was filled with mental and physical torture. But it was so fun to have gone through all of these. We laughed about it when the camp was over.

How I wanted to fall out because mentally I couldn’t take it anymore but seeing my friends suffering both mentally and physically, I knew I had to push myself until I couldn’t take it physically too.

I was pretty blur throughout the camp. I didn’t know a lot of terms. Maybe perhaps I took a lot of things forgranted like I had in my life. It totally reflected during the camp. I was extremely dependable on my buddy.

But thank god after the camp, I learnt how to be independent. Learning to fight my own fights.

I guess the highlight for the field camp would be the letter from home.

My mum wrote a very short note. Most of us got it. The unlucky ones didn’t. It might have dampen their spirits but I was glad to see that it didn’t stop them from continuingly putting on teamwork.

The last day was filled with high spirited boys. We know now that the end is near!

Field camp would mean that all the torture would end. And this is true. Once you go through your field camp, the tempo would go slightly down but the discipline though, maintain.

The journey didn’t stop though the tempo went down, we still have 5 weeks ahead of us.

Mkie.

:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 5 : Week 3 Of 9 ::

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Picture Courtesy from Jack Neo’s awesome movie, AH BOYS TO MEN!

It is finally time to book in on the 21st August 2011. Our first real book in. This time we didn’t come in our civilian attire, we were now the boys in green! We could only bring in the basic necessities, this didn’t include food!

The company I was under was pretty strict. And we were Daddy’s last batch, so the standard just went up another level!

I also marked the last week of the fasting month. So we basically spend the entire month of fasting in camp. For the muslims at least.

It was a very very special time for many of us. The fact that we have bonded so quickly to become a family.

Week 3 of 9 was all about preparing for the field camp on week 4. So we had lots and lots of skill test. I was of course so blur. I couldn’t get a f@#$%^& thing into my head. What was worst was that, I was the last guy from my section, so I always ended into a puddle of mud. But it feel great and it was fun. I felt like a free spirit for once!

The highlight would be the BTP. Basic Trainfire Package. We finally got to shoot real bullets! I didn’t get to join my platoon though because I had counselling session to attend. But hey! I had the whole level to myself and it was the only time during my recruit life that I got to sleep almost the whole day.

So I basically just rested the whole day while my platoon was away. The following day though, it was my turn to go. Was one of the last few guys of the company to shoot. It was a whole day event.

Though I didn’t manage to get the marksman, I am still proud of myself. It was so funny, being a  lefty and having to use a righty weapon just equals to ultimate disaster. That was my first and last time I ever had a chance to shoot a life round.

Well aside from that madness, we did our field test as I mentioned earlier. My favourite test was building the tent. Totally fun. In fact it was the only time in my whole NSF life I got to built a tent and it was during my recruit days. We did our own make up lol! Camo, I hated it. It made me have break outs on my face!

Most of the test required us to work hand in hand with our buddies. I shall share the excitement and drama of the field camp for the next chapter.

As it draws near to book out day, all the muslims were excited! Hari raya on book out day. But we will soon learn that the celebration would be short lifted.

1 more day to book out day and less than 48 hours to book back in! The life of a boy in green!

Mkie.

:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 4 : Week 2 Of 9 ::

 

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Picture courtesy of the Mindef.

P.S. : That isn’t me haha!

 

Week 2, technically the 3rd week since we counted from 0, is were the real deal happens. Now our commanders can finally punish us physically.

Without home for 2 weeks, everyone was at the lowest point of their lives. So we had to depend on each other. We have become a family, after just 14days for each other. Making calls back home became lesser, engaging with other platoon mates suddenly became the top priority.

Of course the main goal of the 3rd week was to book out and see the outside world again.

The view of my company sucks! We can literally see the main land, the ferries coming in and out. Ahhh those were the days. It feels like you are trapped!

We learnt more soildering skills in week 2. We understood even more what it feels like to be independent, honest and vigilant. Our fitness improved and so did our mental toughness. Especially for all the muslims. We were fasting and being put in a situation where you were totally drained, could seperate those who are mental strong or just physically strong.

The first of the many route marches happened on week 2. The 4km route march. It wasn’t as tough as I tough. Though there were a few keng kings who put their cards into play.

I finally had over my I/C roll to another guy. I felt relief. Lesser responsibilities now. But soon I will find out that it was just temporary.

But heck it.

Anyway, I finally started to have a little bit more appetite to eat. The food wasn’t all that bad. I was aleays rushing for the fruits. Especially bananas and apples. I fought a lot during the meal times, only with the obese boys. Only because the were drinking as if we were going to suffer from a drought soon. I guess they don’t understand the meaning of the word SHARE!.

The days finally past. 20 days of not seeing society, we finally got to book out. Of course once we reached the main island, some had someone special like their families or girlfriend waiting for them. For me, I was alone, only because I don’t really have a strong bond with my family. And I was single. My best friends wanted to come over but I said it was ok, it would be 10pm if they wanted to come over and just to send me home, kindna pointless because  I would be too tired to go anywhere anyways.

When I finally got home, everyone was glad to see me. So was I.

But I was too exhausted to have had any conversations with anyone. So I just collasped on my bed and when I know it, I woke up and it was a Sunday and it would be time to book in, in a few hours time…….

Mkie.

:: Memoirs Of The Boy In Green – Chapter 3 : Week 1 Of 9 ::

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Photo courtesy of MINDEF.

This is where it all begins.At least almost.

We are not a little more familiar with what goes around this ”prison”. We get angry at each other but we work together too. That is the amazing thing about the national service. What it does to you. You learn to depend on people who wants to bring down and you want to bring down.

By the 2nd week of the 10 weeks we are more resistant to the training. Well not all of us of course. This is the beginning of most boys true colours. You can see those who fake it, or during national service they call it ”keng”, and those who are the show offs, or we call them ”wayang”.  I didn’t fall under any of these too. So did some of my friends. We basically just want to get this whole thing over and done with. It is like dragging yourself to work kindna feeling.

The 2nd week presents us with the biggest responsibilty during or teterm in the army. Our weapon, also known to many as your wife. More like my step sister. You bring it everywhere you go as long as you draw it out from the armoury.

I hated it. Being with it gives me the thought that I had no freedom!

But oh wells, you can run so better hold its hand till the end.

Week 2 was the last week that you can ever not get punished. So irritate your commanders as much as you can. They can only do verbal punishments to you.

My advice on how you survive week 2, stay focus, stay vigillant and listen-learn-understand-excute!

Mkie.