The end of the first month at CTCRM
Week 4 has come to an end, and I’m looking forward to our Families’ day at the end of week 5. Overall it has been a shock to the system. The days seem long but the week goes quick. Monday was mainly preparation for our first proper night off camp – Exercise First Step. During the exercise we were shown how to cook using our hexi cookers and got to eat our ration packs! Tastier than I thought they would be. We also got lectures on field hygiene and the importance of kit maintenance which started to become apparent the next morning. We had our first kit muster which by any standard I failed miserably. I started sentry with Ben my oppo at 03.30 and stood guard on our side of the camp harbour until 06.00 which for me was a good buzz. It’s the First time since starting training I felt we were doing soldiering with our rifle involved, even although we had no threat other than tripping up in the pitch dark. We have to learn the basics first. It was our responsibility to wake the section up but come that time I was struggling to stay awake myself. All the lessons on time management in the field went out the window and I messed around trying to make sure I had shaved properly which is easier said than done when it’s cold, wet and you are half asleep! At 07:30 we had our kit muster where we were suppose to have all kit laid out with our rifle stripped and cleaned with our mess tins from scran in immaculate condition. Because of my poor field admin I got less than half done which I’m taking as a lesson and a starting point to push on from. Back at Lympstone towards Thursday and Friday we had a couple of hard phys session; rope climbs with the make fast position where you stop and hold halfway up with just your legs and a bit of leverage. We also had a lecture on field craft and what to expect next exercise which is Ex Quick Cover where I want to improve on my field skills. Friday we had our weapon handling test which I passed successfully. Learning the stoppage drills and generally about the SA80 rifle for me has been a highlight but don’t get me wrong my heads been fried with trying to remember it all. Overall it has been another good week, loads to think about and take on board. I don’t think my brain worked as hard at school.
Recruit Fairley of 173 troop