My brother’s going to start his BMT

My brother left for National Slavery yesterday. I’m going to miss that little bugger. He’d always be the one I’d moan to when I’m feeling off.

Of course, he’d could be moody and insensitive at times, and I can be really horrible to him. But I think we’re quite close and confide in each other in a lot of things. Since young, my brother has always tagged around me and I felt the need to share and show him things that I liked to do, like a good big sister should.

I spent the last few days talking to him and we reminised about the days when we were kids. He’d still think that I was eccentric. Oh yeah? I asked him to name one instance that showed my wierdness.

Remember the time when you made me bury my 50 cent coin? That was my entire life savings then and I thought that we could have a money tree then using the 50 cent. I was looking forward to having alot of money to buy stuff.

Memories …

He can be a pain in the neck sometimes, but there are times when he’d be surprisingly nice. Nazry worked in Kentucky Fried Chicken after he left polytechnic. I kept bugging him to steal something from work (Hey everyone does it!) He kept refusing, insisting that he was sick of chicken and won’t bring it home.

I pestered him for days and days and eventually gave up about that. Some morning after, I had a rather surprising message on my phone. It said:

“If it makes you happy, look in the fridge when you wake up this morning”

Lo and behold! A whole boxful of delicious, crispy, fattening sunshiny (stolen) fried chicken from KFC. Mmm!!

So yeah, he is really nice most of the times. I enjoy talking to the little bugger. Mum says that he’s got the heart of a sentimental person.

So anyways, we left for Pulau Tekong early morning and took the ferry there since the island was only accessible by sea. Mum reminisced since she used to live in Pulau Tekong all her life till she became a young adult. I remember it since mum took me there as a little girl. I loved the island life. So slow, and idyllic and natural.

My grandparents owned a farm there with loads of chickens at the back of the house. I’d help out to shower (more like drown) the chickens, sometimes help to shell the coconuts or help out in the provision shop. But most of the times, I’d roam around the island, exploring things, jumping in the sea, bathing in the cool well water, making tents out of things I could find around the house, just being a mischievious little girl.

My grandparents had a neighbour next door who reared crocodiles. Every now and then, I’d sneak in and sit down to observe the crocodiles. They had such shiny, yellow jewel like eyes when they were lying there, basking in the sun, grinning at me.

The crocodiles were in an empty swimming pool, and there were no gates or nets as far as I could remember. I could just sit and dangle my legs at the edge of the pool.

I’m amazed why no one ever scolded me to never go to the crocodile farm even to this day. But, it was really an amazing. I doubt many people had the same experience as I had before.

I could imagine mum thinking about her past life there too as we approached the island.

Security was quite tight there. We had to scan our identity cards every time we reached the gantry and there were soldiers in full army regalia brandishing guns every now and then.

We had a tour of the bunks, the parade grounds, the training grounds and the mess hall. It didn’t look bad, it looked pretty decent actually, if compared to the camp ground that I went to last year (I shiver at the thought of the numerous people using the unwashed bedsheets previously)

I love camp. I’ve always appreciated the outdoors because I was in the uniformed groups: In Primary school, I was in the Brownies, then joined the Girl Guides in my teens. I would have carried on to become a Ranger but for some reason, they never answered to my queries and I sort of lost the desire to join after that.

Outward Bound School was a real wonderful experience for me. It was tough being in the jungle, trying to work out the compass without any help from the guides, hiking for many kilometres in a terrain not familiar to us. Using our skills to spend the night in the jungle comfortably. It’s the little things that makes one appreciate what comforts we have back home.

So, I didn’t worry too much about Nazry’s well being. It’ll just feel different, since our family has always (more or less) been the 6 of us every night. Now it will be only 5. I won’t see him sprawled, sleeping on the couch. I won’t be able to kick him to wake up in time any more.

Anyhow, later in the afternoon, we spent lunch together as a family before we say goodbye to each other. We gave each other huge hugs. That bugger almost broke my back on purpose! Diana’s beautiful straight combed hair was totally messed up when he did his famous nookie. Only a bottle of conditioner could help her hair now. Mum had some tears in her eyes. Even father looked a little less stoic.

Bwah!!! Who am I going to rant and rave to now? Who??

Anyways, I’ll end my blog here for the moment, I should get ready to meet up with Juli, we’re going to Bugis to do some material research for our business. Should be fun, I love that place, its so rustic.

4 thoughts on “My brother’s going to start his BMT”

  1. Krysss,

    In Singapore, every male who have reached the age of 18 and above would be required by law to be enlisted. We call it the “National Service” here. I’d call it National Slavery.

    First two weeks he will undergo the Basic Military Training (we wont be seeing him for two weeks) followed by a more intensive 4 months of physical training (only be seeing him during the weekends, if the sargeant allows it)

    After which, he will be deferred to either, the navy, the air force or the army. All of this should not take a maximum of 2 years.

    Not sure how the procedure is for your country though krysss.

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