Brigade HQ also tells me that 'shortfalls' in personal items can be purchased through the SAF e-Mart online, and can be picked up at my camp when I book-in. But there are some things I can't buy online.
The training program for this year's in-camp training (ICT) is also available at the NSMan's web portal, and I am looking forward to 17 days of Error 404, page not found.
There will also be the convenience of IPPT (Individual Physical Proficiency Test) being conducted during this year's ICT, so that we don't get charged in a military tribunal for forgetting to sign up for it. The instructions for IPPT are quite specific. Brigade HQ says to remember to hydrate yourself, 'empty your bowels' and get a good night's rest before attempting the test.
I am looking forward to the 2.5 weeks of unbridled fun and relaxation. Being an non-specialist, non-officer, low-life trooper affords you the luxury of many hours of Individual Body Maintenance (IBM) while the specialists and officers, poor sods, have to attend many meetings and planning sessions. Among my platoon mates, we also have an informal awards system to augment the Best Soldier medal given at the end of the ICT. Some of these are:
Stupidity Factor Award (Formerly known as the 1st Kong Kum Do Battalion Award): Based on the reality TV show, The Stupidity Factor: Face up to your stupidity, for dumbest, preferably life-threateningly dangerous thing done during training. Last ICT's winner won on a relatively mild act: he swung his LAW (Armbrust Light Anti-Tank Weapon) around at the whole platoon when someone called his name. The LAW was a dummy (and so was he).Fun, innit? And we're gonna get paid too. Not to mention another tax rebate next year, for me and my parents!
Golden Broom Award: For the soldier who manages to convince the MO (Medical Officer) that he is sick, but not sick enough to be out-processed from ICT, earning two weeks no-outfield-training MC, and put in charge of cleaning the bunks.
东西在那里 Dong Xi Zai Na Li (IKEA) Award: For the platoon/section that signs the most SAF1206s (declaration of lost equipment), though these are combined and the whole combat company forks out for it.
Champion Dumpster Award: I'm usually the front runner for this, given my fragile digestive system, but I lost out to this bloke last year who took a dump in the woods during our 3 day outfield exercise. He won because he was the only one to take a dump outfield, and did it within sight of the camp buildings, twenty minutes before we were ordered to return to camp.
When-In-Doubt-Just-Squeeze-Trigger Award: For the misfire king of ICT. Believe it or not, didn't happen last two ICTs.
Where the fuck are the goddamned garters?