Changi Naval Base (picture taken from Erik’s flickr album)
I finally got home last Saturday at around 5pm after a 6 days ICT.
My reservist unit is Changi Defense Squadron and our job is to guard Changi Naval Base. Basically, duties involve vehicle checks, scanning for bomb threats, sentry posts, prowling, etc – very much like professional security guards.
Glad that quite a few other old NSF buddies from Tuas Naval Base were posted to the same unit as me. I made some new friends too. This is the enjoyable part of reservist, catching up with old friends and making new friends.
The bad part is the regimentation.
I find it especially irritating that some of the SAF regulars still have not ‘wake up their idea’ that when guys like me go back for reservist – we see it as doing the nation a favour and we serve because we love our nation, Singapore – not SAF and not because we want a career as a soldier. We do not appreciate getting scolded with vulgar words, and being treated like low-lives by these idiots who signed up because they cannot-make-it-in-the-outside-world and who thinks that RANK is EVERYTHING.
Please lah… once out of uniform, you and I are all fellow Singaporeans trying to make a living. It’s only because I respect the Singapore flag that I call you ‘Sir’ and salute you. Respect from your men has to be earned, and I think most army regulars do not deserve respect because they only know how to pull ranks instead of leading by example.
Having said that, I do appreciate my unit CSM and other good, regular soldiers who appreciate the sacrifices NSmen have to make to accommodate for their career as well as work-life balance and pay us the due respect. To these people, I give them my utmost respect in return and will gladly follow through the orders pass down from them.
I hope more SAF regulars can learn to think this way too.
Anyway, more about my ICT…
The exercise itself is not siong as we only have to do prowling. However, the living condition was atrocious as we have no proper shower facilities and sanitation. The toilets were broken and cannot flush – imagine the stink after four days with 30 men using them! We also don’t get to shower everyday as there is no shower point near our base camp.
The food from Singapore Food Industries (SFI) was as usual – horribly bad. They served us with fried food covered with extremely generous serving of chilli sauce for practically every single lunch and dinner. Weather was scorching hot lor… eat these already such lao sai one. How come they never think about it?
One lesson I learn after this ICT – not to keep deferring.
Eventually, I will still need to complete whatever I deferred. Better to clear them now while I am still young.
One down, 9 more high-key to go.
Oh, and it’s back to work today.
Quite jittery to open up my mailbox and see the explosion of incoming emails… afterall, I am a civilian, not a full-time soldier.
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