Week 17: Exercise Wolfe’s Crossing, Room Inspections and more!

We carry along with the normal running day, things just become more complex. One thing I have noticed is that things that at times felt irrelevant are now all coming together. Our lectures with the academics now bear striking reality to the tactics we get taught by military personal. The psychology lessons we received in CABS are now being linked with how the British military conducted themselves in humanitarian crises such as the Balkans. One thing I am really enjoying currently is war studies and how tactics work in the wider image. We are studying how the German military operated in the beginning years of the Second World War; there is a lot to learn there, especially as they arguably managed to perfect manoeuvre warfare. However, our military skills are not slackening.

We also deployed this week on Exercise WOLFE’S CROSSING. This is mostly supposed to be just a shake-out exercise, brush some cob-webs off our minds so that we are firing on all cylinders for next week’s Exercise MARLBOROUGH’S ATTACK. The weather however seemed to be against us, at its coldest it was -9 Celsius; this made a 3 am sentry duty somewhat more interesting! Nevertheless, it was nice to be able to get outside. I still find patrolling during sunrise one of the more beautiful things in life, up until I remember how cold and tired I am!

Another notable difference now is our rooms. We had a room inspection from the Company Sergeant Major; now, when you have been used to ironing your socks and making sure all 27 rooms are identical, you go into over-drive somewhat when someone utters the words “inspection”. But, this time, our room inspections were not only marked on cleanliness, but also personality and character! My room has had to make a dramatic transformation with pictures and decorations; it is almost like being given your personality back! We have also had some French comrade-counterparts attached to us for the next few weeks. This is a tremendous opportunity as our two nations draw closer together militarily, and we are learning a lot from each other! Their training is significantly longer than ours, so we have a lot more experience we can draw on, and we are teaching them about the value of a hot brew during a cold English winter. On a side note, I am eating my body weight in custard creams and tea as a living room gives a new social dimension to the platoon. And we are still cruising on Op Functionally-Massive in the gym.