Doesn't anybody post on a Friday? Me a veteran posting member of a day and no cracks about the member bit. Maybe all the work get's finished (or started) on Fridays so you have a nice clean desk on Monday morning, plenty of time for posting then. A bit of background before I launch myself into the main boring bit. I was perfectly happy-ish at two postings but then came an element of choice. Now there's something you don't see that often so I grabbed it with both hands. Where to go to see out my illustrious career. I already knew that after nine years the REME would be dispensing with my services as I had not failed my "Upgraders" but had successfully drank myself stupid and managed to get bronchitis probably through getting blocked in cold drafty places or NAAFI bars which I think are basically the same. So it came down to choice. Anywhere but 71 I thought, a layby off the A1, a hut somewhere in the Teutoburgerwald, Canada, Hong Kong, Cyprus and yes I was really dreaming then but please not 71. On my arrival at 71, there was a bug out. I knew it was a bug out because nobody knew what they were doing but they did an impression of knowing what they were doing by rushing about and looking efficient. "What's going on mate?" I asked somebody who wasn't rushing as much as the rest. So I had met my new OC, his first day as well and he was as confused as I was. I survived my first day and was welcomed to the unit by my new OC. I returned the compliment but he looked considerably better settled than me as I had to make my own coffee while he had an army (two at least) of penpushers to satisfy his thirst. I would like to say things got better but they didnt. At my last unit we had the AAC to blame but here it was totally REME and there was nobody else to blame for things that seemed pointless, stupid or just there to pish up your day. I saw another familiar face who promptly gave me a show parade for having creases on my jumper but sown in, the jumper was appparently useless now. He had been my old OC LAD and it's nice to know he remembered me. I would later tell him that we was an arse but that's much later in the story if you can stick it that far. He was allergic to bumps. Yes, strange as it seems, he hated bumps in clothing caused by wallets, large tobacco tins or boxes of sandwiches so you went on parade with an i-d card and nothing else. The inside of the hanger would be littered with disgarded wallets and anybody who was slightly less than honest would have had a field day. Incidentally I didn't do the show parade as the RSM said I was always smart but not to wear that particular jumper on my so-called acquantance's parade. For a few nanoseconds I rediscovered my faith in human nature but it wasn't to last. Things were rapidly going downhill, it wasn't the work, if they'd just leave you alone long enough to get on with it, fine. My health was suffering but of course the world and it's albatross has used a bad back as a get out clause before. I was lucky that the one and only ever good MO was mine thanks to me being vaguely associated to helicopters, i didn't work with them but hid as deviously as possible in the GSE Bay. I got the ultimate sickchit, drawing pay and breath but my saviour at the incident of the show parade, our old friend (?) Duggie had decided that sickies were to parade behind the parade and then pick up litter so me and my knackered back and a broken ankle and the rest of the sick, lame and lazy went on a nice nature bimble trawling for litter. Even the MO on hearing this was unable to stop this, it seemed common sense had eluded our Duggie. This was the straw that broke the camel's back or certainly mine so I was off to the place of my birth, BMH Rinteln. I'd been to BMH Rinteln twice before, once obviously saying hello to the world and visiting a friend's wife who had gone to great lengths not to cook the Christmas dinner by giving birth to a new sprog. I was suitably and predictably drunk and wearing my new sweatshirt with the message "Please ignore anything I do, I'm pissed". I can't think why he bought it for me, I didn't like being ignored. The head cheese of the hospital was visiting as it was Crimbleberry and I was passed off as a distant relative as he eyed my sweatshirt. I shook his hand, I needed support as the wall had run out and it was a swing door but managed to wish him the best in true pretending to be a civvy form. We found my friend's wife and asked her when dinner would be ready and how the sprog was and went back to his quarter for a ten pack, a tin of tomato soup and watched the Wild Geese for the eleventh time. Still like that film, I wonder how it ends. Sorry got sidetracked there. I arrived at Rinteln and was prodded and poked but then leaving the waiting room which was full of ankle biters managed to see somebody in a white coat. They took blood, they took urine and I've thought they've been taking the urine ever since. I had an x-ray then another because it hadn't come out properly. I'd been told to hold it and got confused, I didn't see how that would affect an x-ray of my back. I joined the throngs in the waiting room and waited for the results of my tests. I was a bit dubious when the doctory thing with staff tabs came out to see me personally and he was smiling. I never trust people who smile alot and he smiles again and a bit more. Still taking the urine I thought as he then told me there was nothing wrong with me. I asked him if that meant that THEY couldn't find anything wrong with me which is slightly different as I wasn't the one at Arborfield who carried medication around in a carrier bag and had more Benylin that Boots and Lloyds the Chemists combined. I think it was the shrug of the shoulders that gave it away when I asked if anything else could be done. The smile did disappear from his face if I asked if there was a proper doctor in the house and you could see his shoulders trying to push out his crown and pips. I had a funny feeling that he was going to pull rank so I just said my goodbyes, well "bollox to you" was what I said. He answered that he would be writing to my CO and I replied that I hope the poor bastard isn't ill as well and walked out. He never contacted my CO but I was past caring by then. I was still suffering but I had heard that there was a civilian vacancy in the GSE Bay and thought that would do nicely thank you. I had to grin and bear things which isn't much fun but if you grin and bare things you can get arrested. I enquired about the job and was told that it was there for me, it's just a matter of losing the green stuff. I didn't have time to work my ticket and I've not heard of many succeeding so thought I'd do the honest thing and PVR. The forms went in, signed, counter-signed and I was told that 450 pounds would be the figure. I had already counted out the pfennigs in the three litre Dujardin bottle and was way short so just wrote a cheque.The day loomed closer and closer and even the odd spiteful duty didn't shake my spirits, it totally pished me off but I was getting out so who gives a fcuk. The last week was magical, walking around with a clipboard (a trick I would frequently use as a civvy) with my booking out form. I had already got rid of my quarter but the wife had to come with me so we found a flat in a nearby village. The handover was perfect, the toothpaste filled the holes in the wall and the more than helpful moving team made more holes in the wall, the doors and broke most of the furniture but after all it didn't cost me anything. I gave back the multitude of green stuff and then received most of it back again as of course there was still the horrors of being a reservist. I did fight that and eventually got them off my back and ceremoniously burned the sodding lot. It was the fact that I was shortly to be classed as disabled that swung it but I did say I was Communist, Budhist, Seventh Day Adventist, Jehovah's Witness to no avail, maybe if I'd said I was gay but then there are limits. I also argued that it had not been brought to my attention when signing on which is true but try finding witnesses from a Gloucester recruiting office in 1979. So one happy Friday, of course I was happy, it was a happy hour and I was pished but Monday morning I would Walk in a free man. That weekend I prepared my kit for the Monday. I scuffed my boots, washed but did not iron my lightweights, Unpicked the sown-in creases on my woolly pully and ripped the name tag off my coveralls. Thank fcuk I wouldn't be wearing that green stuff again! I parked my car as the workshop lined up in straight lines (ish) and headed for the hangar door. "Get your fcuking hair cut" came from the square. "Bollox" was my satisfying reply. If anybody is interested I can carry on in another posting, this has gone on a bit but don't I always. Interesting might be how I was on strike outside the barracks and how I was going to shut the kitchen down at the sergeant's mess. It'sa up to you, I'm full of it and don't you know it. Let me know anyway. Please excuse any bad spelling or grammar, I do this all bareback, that is without a spellchecker.