I suddenly realise I do have stories to tell. Not my own, though; my life as a trainee, and now as an MTO, has been pretty uneventful so far. The drivers under me are a different story altogether.
A driver's life is shit. From one of their mouths. Of course, it's not standard across all SAF camps. It depends very much on the commanders and supervisors, needless to say. I've only just taken over for a week, so I haven't made any changes to the shitty life of the drivers, but after hearing many of their stories I'd really like to help them find something in what they are doing.
The typical life of a driver (in my unit):
0745: Reach camp, wait for first parade, which should have started.
0755: First parade. Get shouted at for being late. Duty IC reports strength. Forgets to salute. CSM shouts at him again.
0800: Supposaed to report for detail. Starts doing first parade tasks and checks after drawing out vehicle key.
0820: Leaves for detail late. Gets scolded again.
1100: If lucky, detail ends here. Return to camp. If not, eat lunch outside, keep driving.
1200: Mid-day parade. don't have green water bottle. Get shouted at again.
1500: End of detail. Return to camp. Do last parade tasks.
1600: Rest in driver rest area. Fall asleep. Get shouted at again.
1730: Last parade. Drivers no energy, look very slack. Get shouted at again. Finally fall in. Report strength, fall out. Get shouted at again for not signing book out book.
You can see that it involves alot of shouting. The not so typical day includes reporting to camp at 0630 for exercises that stretch the whole day, sometimes 2 days. Or else there's weekly maintenance to do on vehicles still in camp. The real shit is in the monotony: 50kph on the highway, doing the same checks on 3 vehicles in 1 day, getting shouted at for the same things...
granted, many of the things they get shouted at are their own fault. but just you try and educate a driver. they can't understand that the SAF does not run on their honour and fairness system, they find it hard to survive the politics in-office, and nobody takes care of their welfare.
So at this point in time the least i can do is hear them out and help them cover their asses with paperwork, at the same time figuring out what the hell is going on, what neds to be done, and waiting for my computer account to be activated so i can finally get cracking. With any luck they'll walk out of camp with their pink ICs, slightly more astute and with a future to look forward to.