Saturday, February 28, 2009

11:10 PM

10 more days to POP

In a flash, the number of days left to my BMT POP is less than my confinement period now. During training, time seem to pass all so slowly. Once I'm out of training, it seems as if not one day has passed between bookouts.

Ok, readers should be wondering about my unexpected 2 week haitus after my field camp. It so happens that my entire Orion company has to be confined for one weekend to attend a SITuational test. This test is supposed to pick out potential leaders for command school based on their performance in their given mission. As for my performance, lets just say I do not think I did very well lah.

With my Remedial Training today, that makes it about 13 days of confinement, second only to the 16 days initial confinement period. It was sian no less, but with 2 road marches in between and the ultra-shack 3-day-2-night outfield SIT test, I just wonder how the hell did I manage to survive all of them.

That includes the 12km (16km for most of the company) route march entirely in the rain. The normal full-battle order (FBO) is already half my weight. The rain showed no mercy on us. Our field packs seems to act like a sponge. Absorb water but dun release. My uniform and double-socks were soaked beyond saturation point. Then plus the rocky, muddy and sticky ground that somehow refuses to release my boots (Imagine walking on glue) when I have to take a step and fail to cling on when I desperately need the extra friction. Every step forward seemed like an inhuman effort. The ultimate experience possible for BMT at least.

But still, survived I did with my platoon. The 24km (I will only march 16km then) POP graduation route march will double all of that. Such tests of mental strength really did pushed me beyond my limits. After all, the only way to know your true limits is to surpass them and return safely. Then you emerge a stronger person and know what you are capable of. I never knew I could do that, I'm sure this sentiment is shared by everyone who has passed through it. Very soon, we will be put to the test again. The wonders of "progressive training"

On a lighter (or heavier?) mode, I'm getting closer to pass my IPPT but still not close enough.

Shuttle-run- 10.5s
Pull-up- 8
Standing Broad- 212cm
Sit-ups- 43
2.4km run: 10mins 36s

A general improvement across the board. My 2.4km timing is the fastest I have ever achieved in my life. Never before have I ran below 11mins! My SBJ still remains a bugger. Its because of 4cm that I have to retake the IPPT next week and be confined one more day today for remedial training. Did so many jumps today that I can barely march/walk back. IPPT must pass pass pass! Or I have to say bye bye to command school, all because of 4cm.

Then I have yet to mention the Standard Obstacle Course (SOC). If you give me everything off I can accomplish the entire course with ease, want me to wear the skeletal-battle-order (SBO) and I show you that I cannot even clear the first 1.83m "low wall". Piang eh, I hate such physical tests. Wonder why I am classified PES B combat fit in the first place.

The end of my BMT life is close. The posting to another unit whether its training to be a commander or as an ordinary rifleman will be totally different. Guess, I have to treasure whatever time I have left on this giant eastern island of Pulau Tekong. I may not see it again for the rest of my life.

I noticed all my previous posts lacked pictures. So I immediately took the opportunity to do a self portrait of myself while I was still in No 4 when I got home.

Thats me in the FBO attire sans the SAR21 rifle of course. Not an eyeopener. The only difference is the pixelised uniform which I am among the first batch to wear. Everywhere I go, I get stares and comments like "thats the new SAF uniform!" Yah for now, from far you see, anyone who wears it is almost always a recruit.

For now, I am enjoying my second last bookout as a BMT recruit!

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I'm Kheng Meng, yeokm1 aka "the insignificant observer"


Came to life on 5 September 1990



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NS STTS MSET F23/09-10 G2
NS STTS TTW G42 B24
NS 3 Signal Batallion TCC2 UIP
NS Signals 04/08 Infocomm 1 WACTC
NS BMT Orion Coy Platoon 3 Section 2
Nanyang JC 0713, Tribe27, 0720, OG18
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