Saturday 17 March 2012

Field Day 2k12

Unlike HABSMUN, this was probably a final thing I was looking forward to the end of. I've stuck at the CCF despite it trying its best to destroy me (the 36 hours of rain at Warcop Summer Camp a couple of years back springing to mind). While there have definitely been some excellent moments - an incident involving coco-buttering of someone's arse in a gay-off and coasteering stand out, it is something I will be glad to say I have completed. And this final field day is one step closer to finishing Habs CCF. I think the response to my relatively sarcastic, "I will miss spending time in a basha so close to the ground with you two," summed up my feelings: "I wouldn't say I'd miss it...but I'll look back upon it with happy memories." More on that later!

My final army field day started as any other one did, with a long wait. No surprise really, but it is something we have gotten used to in the Army Section, coining the unofficial motto, "Hurry up and wait." We refused to be put off by our coach turning up fashionably late and were in relatively high spirits as the darkness dropped down around us even if most of that was "WOOOO final field day". Having decided that we would actually do a proper tactical de-bus (pronounced de-bu) instead of screaming "BE TACTICAL", "THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A TACTICAL DE-BUS" and generally laughing at how untactical our tactical de-buses (pronounced de-bu-se), those on the back of the bus (i.e. U6) would remain there for a while as the slowest bus exist in history occurred. Finally off, I took the opportunity to look to the heavens and was disappointed when nothing but cloud revealed itself - I was hoping that in my many hours stood around being enemy, I could at least look at the stars and pretend to have a clue what was going on. A relatively swift walk followed with the army section's, or rather my, taste in music brought into question with classics such as "Never gonna give you up" and "I want it that way" being sung at whatever volume we thought we could get away with.

Having made it into camp in the dark (I am not sure I have ever set up camp when it has been light), it was time to start setting up. That meant, at least for myself, Tom and Luke, making our final basha together and we were determined to make this the lowest one ever so that it was nothing more than slipping between two sheets. I am not quite sure why we put ourselves through sleeping in really low basha's, which invariably break as we try and get into them, but it became something of a field day tradition. I think we succeeded as well, with our basha no more than a few inches of the ground, leaving for an interesting attempt at squeezing underneath it later. With shelter built, I whipped out my Jew Saus (sausage) and shared it around. No, it is not what you're thinking, dirty mind. Jew Saus is a kosher turkey sausage that has become something of a favourite with fellow cadets and I bring it along every field day. We were left to cook and eat before setting of on the night exercise. 

I was dropped off at the "radio mast" along with Chris and Vivek, as enemy told to defend it from a section who were trying to plant an IED. Quite why enemy would defend a radio mast that belonged to the camp and quite why a section would want to blow up what was effectively their radio mast is beyond me but defend it we would. Well, we'd lie down and try not to get too cold, with Vivek finding a particularly comfortable tree branch and practically fell asleep. Every so often we'd get up, have a wonder and talk really loudly about our plans just like any regular enemy would with no sign of the patrolling section. I managed to scream as a teacher approached and we ended the night telling ludicrous jokes. We did get IEDed having not spotted the section, but I really couldn't care less with my attentions firmly focused on the 6am wake up that morning as we were still waiting to be dropped back at 1am. 

Sleep was interesting. The customary "ooo are you happy to see me?" jokes were made and there was a lot of "I AM OUT THE TENT" as we rolled around to get comfortable. Having managed to get the middle spot, I could only look in with smugness as Luke and Tom struggled to stay inside a quickly breaking basha. I had also brought a pillow and was strangely comfortable, even if Tom decided to climb over me so he could take photos of the three of us with a basha sheet in our faces. We left Luke to wake up at 5, Tom and I decided that we were not need until 7, at the earliest. Despite Luke's protestations we did not surface until just after 7 - why we would need to wake up at 6, when we had to be ready by 8.10, I have no idea and I wasn't about to give up what little sleep I had! 
The basha in question

I was enemy again, which was bliss with no running around or physical activity needed, just an opportunity to fire off about 90 rounds from whatever position we wanted with an interesting one handed approach being taken by a couple of us. There isn't much to report other than we definitely defeated a pathetic platoon attack despite there only being 4 of us and we then had to wait around...

Rounds aplenty
...For a long time. In fact there was nothing for us to do from about 10.30ish until 2, so we tossed a rugby ball around, made some tea and tried to stay warm. It was a nice feeling - knowing that it was nearly over and I could return home for a lovely shower and my bed very soon. Field days are always tiring even though you don't really do that much and while they definitely have given me some fond memories, it is good to finally be done with them. With jokes about joining the OTC when we went to university a plenty, we boarded the coach home (which was early for once) and within about 30 minutes the usual head back, mouth opening sleeping position had been donned by many. With the final mad rush to make the 4.15 coaches for most, having arrived back at school at 3.55, came the end of my final field day. 4 years of CCF and at least I've made it to the final field day without being kicked out!

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