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Monday, January 6, 2014

My PMA Cadet Years (Cow Year) - Here Comes The Navy

May 1997

1- Another overnight liberty (privilege) "for the boys", with 2 of my mistah(s).  And when the boys go out, it is expected that there are a lot of fooling around.  But that was part of youth... as people grew older, they mature with time (hehehe).  

2 to 6 - We had a survival swimming lesson this day, but I was not able to join it since I spent the whole day in the sick bay of our ship (Raja Humabon- PF11).  While I was sick, I had a surprised visit from my fos-mom and sisters from Manila.  I felt annoyed that I had fever and embarrassed to my visitors.  They traveled far just to know that I can't be with them.  Why hadn't I texted them?  It's still the 90's (ha ha ha).  I hadn't joined a couple of activities for almost a week.  I learned a lesson the hard way which I promised never to happen again.

7- We transferred from PF-11 to BRP Rizal ship, where the crew had a gunnery exercise.  We were mere spectators that day.  As I remembered, they placed floating targets in the sea for the ship's artillery precision testing.
8 to 10- Then from BRP RIZAL, we transferred to BRP Bacolod (LC 550) for our Southern Cruise (at last we started sailing).  It was a 3-day trip of exposure to the ship and a seaman's life.  We often had some basic preparedness drills and fitness exercises while on-board.  And duties as ship watchers at night.  When we reached Zamboanga, we were given liberty to roam around the city.  Along with some mistah (classmate), we bought some of their famous "malongs".

Photo taken from
11 to 14- An unfortunate event happened during this time and we needed to go back to the Philippine Navy Headquarters.  So we had no longer had our Cebu tour.  As we sailed, we were taught how to manned the reel, still with the watch details, and watch VHS during free time.  We were then allowed for liberty upon reaching our destination.  And as what cadets usually do, we visited the house of a mistah who lived nearby.  For me, it felt like as if I already visited my own family.

15 to 17- We were given a few days of liberty, so I went to Harrison Plaza and buy some stuffs and again stayed overnight in a mistah's house.  Then the following day, visited my relatives and friends in our province.  Cadets normally do that, taking advantage to go to places while in the city... to keep up with the world around them and see what's new or just to reminisc how it was before being a cadet.  

18 to 19- As usual, maximizing every minute and beating the termination time of our leave.  Then we boarded our buses and went back to the PMA to continue with our academics... and cadet life.

20 to 26- We then complied our Navy course requirement... the MRMSC or Minimum Requirement for Midshipman Second Class.  It's like putting into writing all the learning and experience we've been through during our cruise along with some research.  Though I thought I couldn't hand it on time, I finished it like everything else. 

27 to 31- It was early morning when we boarded our buses to Fort Magsaysay, Palayan City, Nueva Ecija... my 3rd FTX (Field Training Exercise).  The sun was scorching when we arrived that day.  And we were immediately paired with another cadet in order to build a tent (logical, since we were issued a half tent).  The first few days were set for orientations... and privilege, where I bought some stuffs that would be handy for the training and met again the young lieutenants of PMA class 97.  But what's more challenging was, before the week ended, a typhoon hit the place and we're always wet, inside the tent was wet... but I never recalled we're that affected, since we didn't mind even if we're soaked, we still slept well.  We just think of it as part of the training... Yahweh bless.

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