Now some of you, who have read previous scribbles of my life story, will know that I bucked against my parents’ dreams of me following in the family tradition of joining the Army.
Well, I held that thought for a while, again some will know that in my mid-twenties, I joined the Royal Air Force and had a successful and glorious career.
However, one thing I haven’t mentioned is that I actually also have 10 days of accountable service in the British Army.
I was 19 years old, working as a trainee Mental Nurse at a time when standards and conditions did not ring true with my ideas of what helping people would be.
So, I decided I would give this Army “thing” a whirl. I applied and trained daily in order to be battle-ready.
Now the thing I hadn’t jigged into the plan was having an accident on my Vespa Douglas 200 Scooter, some 6 weeks prior to my Army assessment.
Flying through the air over the handlebars smacked as the beginning of the end in many respects. Though landing on my head was not a great experience either way.
Torn muscles, massive bruising all over and some stitches to the forehead certainly gave me a “look”. But I would not be deterred.
The selection centre experience consisted of 5 am calls to lots of running around and taking masses of exams for the first 3 days. The results of this tranche of exams would determine what trade you would be eligible for.
Within a large theatre, we awaited our results, names were called and special coloured slips that allocated your career choices were allocated. We all waited with bated breath, we knew anyone getting a pink slip basically could choose any trade.
And yup, I got a pink slip and when asked my choice of a trade I opted for the Royal Signals, Dad have served with the Royal Signals for 23 years and it seemed like a good option.
The following day was a physical exam and test. Even given my recent accident I felt comfortable in the fact…