OK! Here we go! 3rd Battalion Singapore Guards 10th Mono Intake ATEC 2. The one we have been training for. The O levels of National Service. The ultimate objective we have to conquer to get back our pink IC.
We were back at the Shoalwater Bay training area, Queensland Australia. As you would have known by now, I hate travelling. But I must say, the place is actually beautiful. Though it is just an arid sub tropical climate of endless sand dust and dried up trees.
Honestly I cannot remember much about our ATEC 2. So most probably it is just going to be a short post. Yes. The memories are inevitably disappearing. Of course, part of it is because, we don’t really want to remember it as we were going through it.
Same thing like before, it was just mission after mission. Walk after walk. Longer summer days. Cold Australian nights. The vegetation was sparse, making firefights quite easy. We were very fit but we were also very sleepy. I cannot remember how long was ATEC 2 but we didn’t care. Every day is another day closer to earn our freedom and back to our normal lives after ORD.
I will include more pictures here so you can see how beautiful the place is, though of course pictures can never do justice to the place compared to what your eyes can see. More pictures because less words.
I do remember some small things about it.
One. Gam’s coffee rush.
I was in the GPMG team. I had 2 men under me, Shahrizal and Gam. We had damn heavy loads to carry. I still cannot understand why they put me, a skinny fellar, to be in this team. I had good men. These 2 guys were as strong as an ox. But still, the toughness of the missions and the terrain can wear the fittest and strongest down.
I remember we were very sleepy. We were very tired too. Like all missions, we would have to walk to the objective. The walk would usually take the whole night. As we reached the objective, Gam was spamming coffee powder. He ate them all from the sachets. I understand because we were all extremely sleepy. But he spammed it right before we began our firefight at the objective and suddenly he had the coffee rush. Even with the load, he sprinted past us during the firefight. It was always me running first and they tagged behind me as they wait my assessment and my instructions. But for this mission, Gam just sprinted and “killed” the enemies as fast as he could while me and Shahrizal had to keep up with him. It was funny. After the mission, we laughed and he just said… “wow that was a rush.” Of course after that, we were tired again.
Two. We were fierce.
It was ATEC 2. We didn’t want to fail it. We wanted to get it done and get out of there. The umpires were doing their jobs but also tried to make life difficult for us by throwing challenges. Some time before this, we were told to always respect them and adhere to their instructions and their decisions. But this particular exercise, we didn’t care. We knew our stuff. We trained and fought together longer than the umpires knew us. We knew our drills like clockwork. The umpires had to run to keep up with us. Way back when we started our training 1.5 years ago, Lieutenant Jason told us that we must be like dogs, upon released into the battlefield, we have to sprint and hunt our enemies down before they could react. That was what we did. It was our last burst of fire. And sprinted we did. Some of the umpires were not happy because they could not see what we did and could not decide on the “kills”. But we barked at them, both the enemies and the umpires. It wasn’t our fault they couldn’t keep up. I remember seeing many of us ignoring the umpires, including myself and screaming back at them whenever they made “dubious” decisions and we fought until we got our way. It was fun.
Three. Fardlie challenging our CO.
Well he was just doing his job. I was nearby and I saw it. We were supposed to defend an area and if anybody were to approach, we would have to challenge the person with a password. If they get it wrong, it was our job to engage him. It was night, it was dark. CO and his entourage approached our area and Fardlie challenged him for the password. Of course he got it right, and passed through but what happened after that, his entourage laughed at us sarcastically, “waaaah you all dare challenge CO ah?” Sorry. We don’t angkat or tripod ranks. Doesn’t mean got high rank, we have to put flowers for him to pass. This is not the CC or grassroots event. This is ATEC. We mean business.
So yeah, that’s all I can remember. We ended ATEC like battle hardened soldiers. Went back to Samuel Hill Camp and enjoyed our rest.
ATEC 2 final result : High Redcon 2A
Bolehlah. As long no need to redo. As long as we can ORD in time and in peace.
Next Week : Exercise Wallaby Again (Part 3)
Categories : The Army Series
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