“Should I set alarm clock for tomorrow?” asked Dave to no-one in particular before answering, “forgot, we got human alarm clock in the bunk”.
The human alarm clock was Jonah “Marsh” Lim, who earned his nickname because during every in-camp training, he’s the first to wake up and wake everyone else up to go for breakfast. He’s earned a few other snipes for being so concerned about us missing the most important meal of the day. He takes it all in his stride.
He doesn’t have to any more, though, because we’ve just completed the last of our armoured battalion’s training camps, which was capped off with what to some was an over elaborate parade featuring soldiers, armoured vehicles and family members who were game enough to come to camp with us early on a Saturday morning.
Having deferred from national service for eight years, I hadn’t had the chance to serve out my NS days with my original unit, but I’ve been fortunate to have been posted to this unit comprising the best fellas anyone could hope to be buddies with. Joining them in December 2001 as a rusty trooper who hadn’t had any training for a decade, my new platoon mates helped me out, and once, even dragged me by my uniform through the jungle when I couldn’t even stand up from sheer exhaustion.
There’ll be more to reflect on, once I get clearance to talk in greater detail. But in the meantime, well done men and commanders of 433 SAR for completing 10 years of service.