Weekly Photo Challenge: Waiting


Waiting…this week’s WordPress photo challenge theme

Waiting…something soldiers do a lot  of…above the the iconic painting by Graham Braddock of a soldier shivering at the Waiouru train station in the company of those who have gone before…it is not the most hospitable of places especially in the middle of winter, and less so when the duty driver forgets to meet the train…have walked down the tracks into the camp a few times…

Waiting for something to happen, waiting for something to stop…waiting to march on to a battalion parade after having already been at work for two hours (theme variation: hurry up and wait!), waiting for a reviewing officer whose driver got lost, waiting to see if the boss gets his words right this time…huddling on an icy hill in Pureora, waiting for the damn sun to come up so we can find out where we are…waiting for the chopper home only to find it’s been cancelled…waiting for the camp duties to call the RP Section to close the Baggies bar coz it’s a bit rowdy…

More waiting below…all cleaned up with our good gears on waiting for the Herc to take us back to Burnham…the two Scorpions are not back to back in al-round defence: one is towing the other – bloody tankies abusing the Jag engine and gear box again, most likely!

HEREKINO SAFARI was was of the best exercises I ever did…a full Ready Reaction Force deployment to Northland to clear the dreaded Musorians out again…HMAS Tobruk wasn’t available so to replicate an across-the-beach landing all the vehicles bar a couple of Rovers and Scorps that were flown in, were assembled on Ninety Mile Beach just as if they had been marshalled off the landing craft.  It really demonstrated the utility of the Scorp as a light fire support vehicle – one would trundle just behind the lead section as it advanced on foot – action on contact was to break off to the sides of the road and let the Scorp barrel up and start thumping away.

And on the topic of waiting, our section was tasked to conduct an OP over the enemy main position for a couple of days, returning back to the company lines just before the battalion moved out on a night march to the form-up point for the ever-popular dawn attack. The OC stood us down to secure the company’s kit that had been left behind but he may have omitted to run this by our platoon commander (some guy Keating who may have subsequently gone on to bigger and better things!!) – when informed that we’d been excused dawn attacks for the day, he had a fit of junior officer bravery and went storming off to  “…see about this...” No doubt he did but we still got the night off, harboured up by the local community hall where they just happened to be having a shindig of some sort…the lovely local ladies probably slipped more kai out the kitchen window to us than went into the hall itself as we waited for sun-up and Aunty Huia…

Waiting to see Wigram as we descended through cloud on the way home –  just a flash of concrete and a thud as the main gear hit the runway – waiting to see if anyone up the pointy end could actually see where we are going in those pre-GPS days…the good old days…

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