So we've been swallowed by the green army machine. So far it's been alright -
lots of forms to fill in, scary stuff about now being under military law, lots
of rumours about what might or might not happen. Some 'on the bus', 'off the
bus' but not too much. This coming week is going to be very busy - trying to
pack in three months training into three weeks! Which is about normal for TA.
Except that of course we're not any more. Tomorrow is 7am-10pm, not much time
left for a drink in the bar... ya boo sux.

A special "Humour, Sense Of, Army, Other Ranks" has been issued which keeps us
relatively sane. And those of us who have done regular service (or simply spent
a long time away from home without contact) are introducing 'first timers' to
the perils - not only of being away but also of going back. There's over a
hundred of us (only a few have been failed for medical reasons) spending 24
hours a day in each others company. This could be interesting... At the moment
we're packed about 30 to a small room. The smell is, shall we say, 'rich'.
Army diet seems to do strange things to the digestive system, and social graces
were discarded around 15 seconds after turning up. Most words seem to start
with two syllabels starting 'f' and ending 'ing'.

We've completed the 'mobilisation' bit. Now we're doing basic training to
revise all the basic stuff - which end of the rifle to point, how to live in a
full body protective suit (hygene jokes again), how to address The Management
('Sir' apparently is better than my "Oh hello Important Person"). Once that's
done we're on to all the Chemical stuff for a couple of weeks, on Salisbury
Plain of all places. So much for bringing my warm weather gear!

Good news for me: they're willing to pay me my full salary (wahey!) but only
after I showed them that all my *essential* expenses come to that. which
probably explains why I can't actually afford beer... Ho hum.

Other than that, not much of interest (unless you have an Humour, Army, and if
so why haven't you handed it back in?) - I'll be sending some photos back via
Paul soon I hope. Mostly of lots of people in green funnily enough. We won't
get a proper mail address until we go abroad (if, of course, we do) but there
is a 'care of' that might work, I need to find what the complete thing is
though. I'll check this email intermittently for the next week (it's in the
NAAFI, where they serve BEER in coke cups. We're posh we are).

Cheers for now,

Trooper Hill (who?)