153 TROOP WEEKLY DIARY – WEEK 6
Training thus far has been a challenging and transformative process for the entire Troop. We entered foundation as strangers and over the last six weeks, the bonds between us have grown exponentially as we share in the hardships and overcome the challenges set before us by our Training Team. When the going gets tough, I truly believe that each individual will dig out to help their ‘oppo’ when it really matters, despite prior differences.
After the initial two weeks in the foundation block, our Troop has been split into five Sections and assigned a training Corporal for each respective section. This Team, along with a Sergeant and Troop Commander, will lead us through the rest of training acting in both mentor and supervisory roles. Drawing from a wealth of combined experience and knowledge, the Training Team has lead us on three field exercises along with classes in weapon training, map reading, and other subjects pertinent to our training. While most lessons are taught in the form of lectures and the practical application of our newly acquired knowledge, some lessons are taught using a different style of corrective or remedial exercise. These lessons serve as either a vehicle for learning or a test to temper the Troop’s determination and ability to work as a cohesive unit. Multiple room changes help instil the sense of urgency that is critical when operating within a commando unit.
Crash moves in the middle of the night during exercises test our combat readiness, our ability to work as a team to protect each other from the enemy threat and be able to move at a moments notice should the need arise. Kit musters enforce the importance of maintaining high standards in the field with respect to both equipment and personal hygiene. Few of us will remember the things we did right the first time, the things we were not picked up or criticized for, but all of us will remember the sleep deprivation, the exhaustion, and the reasons we were subjected to these experiences. Most of the time these lessons hit the nail of the head, our Troop learns as a whole and we adjust our behaviour accordingly. There are however, some nails that must be struck more than once before they are flush with the required standard.
It is with a mixture of excitement and dread that we enter our seventh week of training. The Troop has lost nine lads to injury, family issues and a variety of other stumbling blocks. On Monday we embark on Exercise Marshal Star, where we can expect to further our education in map reading and navigation. Though the tasks ahead can seem daunting, even insurmountable, when we come out the other side I am sure the entire Troop will have grown stronger, wiser and more confidant in our ability to achieve success in the face of adversity.