Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Venture Survival Instructorship Course

The Venture Survival Instructorship Course is a Course that spans across two weekends and require tremendous amount of efford on my part to not get bored during the waiting time between Malaysia and Singapore. I think I did quite a good job in the camp itself, or rather a course in its core.

The First part or phase one is a general introduction of what we will encounter during the second week or phase 2. I had a really fun time back there. Our group built a shelter that will hide a 105mm recoiless gun unit with ease but could not keep that tropical rain away as we use as much vegetation as possible and it was like getting praise for the wrong idea. This is a Scout survival course, not army E&E (Escape and Evasion). It turn out well as we have plenty of food and water to sustain us and the beach is really nice.

I made quite some friends there, Joshua, Joseph, Simon and ETC but the most important ones are the Mozzies who like to visit us now and then and during the night. How we love the night...... full of visitors that keep us busy...... Was bitten on the lips not once, not twice but a full three times. I can still remember the day I could not consume anything or speak properly. It is fun in my own way though, the hardship that is suffered. The most fun part is that we are allow to swing our knives around, literally. We hack down quite a few trees and cleared an area for our "home".

And the lord say, let there be light, and there was light......

Lighting at night is one of our major concern cos, no light = no smoke = Mozzies visiting us. I used up one full box of matches and was never be able to light anything. Still, at least we have the scar to show off to our parents and the juniors. Some horror story......one guy was bitten so much until in the second day he could not be bitten anymore as the swell has his body to thick that the mosquitoes are not interested in him anymore.

Face painting was a good way to play around, it is quite fun to be called the cheiftain as I am the only person who applied the most face paint out of the whole group. It was fun, really.....

Now to a more serious note, the second week AKA phase 2.

It was significantly a more challenging period of time as we do not have any food at all. Except for the potatoes they give. And they only give us potato which is hard to cook and unlike sweet potato, dehydrates the body faster and low sugar content. Hunger clouds the mind, they say. It really do. By the second day, I can feel my hand s getting sore out of nothing.....maybe it is after one whole night of logging, albeit illegal.... Our shelter and the group of three who made it, most notably Wei Shen and Joshua, felt that it was good, but not good enough I guess.

Ends the first day of phase 2 with a embering fire which has sulphur and condom thrown inside, not to mention the full contingent of commando Mosquitoes and various other units guarding us that night. We all sleep sounly until the first light......
The second day was also quite special as we have the usual inspection and such. But hunger sets in fast and we are like dying the second morning. Desperate, we went to the main tent and invited Mr Spencer to give us some potato. He did and a big one he gave us. Tha sad thing is that it was not enough for three of us, but it is better than nothing. Then near afternoon, I myself was checking the area, foraging food when I stumble on Zhong En's Campsite.

I allow myself to help them to shave their utensils but i lack the fine skill in doing it. Alas, just when i am about to leave, I cut myself. Just a tiny weeny cut, but with the effect of exhausion and low blood sugar, I felt giddy and went into a shock. Luckiy there are trained professionals down there and help me to recover. Suprisingly, I was conscious throughout the whole ordeal although I could not fell a single thing. In the end, the down time was estimated a 5 hours at least. two hour at main tent, three hour at my site.

I felt sorry for my buddies down there as I could not do anything to help them felt so guilty, I think if i was able to help, my group can have a chance to go first, just that we could not do it anymore that day and my performance is seriously affected throughout the camp. the rest of the time we spend talking cock and slack as it is essential to conserve energy.

The last day due to exceptional performance, three other groups get to go in the morning, not before anyone else and shockingly, Rodney was among the first to pack their bags!!! In the end, we are left there and wait. The most frustrating period was during that time, I can sense infighting going on and every word we uttered sure have something vulgar in it. Just that I was happily making fire, completely oblivious to what is going on. At last, final inspection and we are allow to pack up by noon. After the insprational talk by adrian, including the legendary "what the fuck am i doing here" and the rational behing it.

Seems clear to me that my purpose for this camp is not the award or the certificate but to have a fun time. I admit I felt happy during the camp and with more suffering, I enjoyed more of the camp. No grudges no nothing, so not human like.....as I would like to call myself. It also boils down in the end that I want to test my limit and enjoy some holiday out if the work i must do back home.

All ventures who were with me for the two weeks, remember to tag!!

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