It seemed just like yesterday when I was to pack my bags and head down to Nasarawa state for my service year, I had so much enthusiasm for the service year. I had dreams of serving my father’s land to the fullest, contributing my quota to the community I would find myself. I was equally looking forward to developing myself as a person. I was also glad to be leaving the region I grew up in to find what life was like beyond the west.
The day I was to travel seemed like it was never going to come, the night before was even longer, I had my boxes all packed and good to go. Here I am 8 months later and I look back and wonder if I had wasted 8 months or if I actually had been true to myself. I was posted to the army barracks for my primary assignment, the Commanding officer of the Battalion had a talk with the New corp members. During his talk with us he told us three lessons we would learn before leaving the barracks and the service programs that would stick to up even beyond service. The things he told us we would learn and I have already learned and working on include:
1. How to Wake up early: Waking up early is something I have picked up serving in the barracks and during the service period. Work at my PPA (Place of Primary Assignment) starts officially by 7:30 as we have to get to school coordinate students in cleaning their classes then have general assembly, my first months in service had me lacking in this. I eventually adapted to the time constraints adjusting my Sleeping times to sleep early, waking up early, preparing things i’d need for the day like my books, clothes, water etc. I find that the extra 30 minutes spent arranging these things the night before can save you 30 minutes in the morning.
2. How to dress in a Certain way: I have been used to this right from high school and University, where we had strict dress codes that had to be followed. Dressing a certain way can determine how comfortable one would be when he/she starts working. Every occupation has their dress codes , Doctors have white coats, lawyers have their wigs, black suits and white shirts, engineers have their helmets, Mechanics and other Handy workers have their overall, the military men have their Camouflaged khakis etc. Basically every setting you find yourself there is a dress code which applies to all. As corp members we are expected to wear our Government issued khakis, crested vests, caps and foot wears. So I can say I have learned the importance of dressing well.
3. How to say Sir : this has to be like the easiest of all the three, there is nothing hard in saying sir, infact saying sir can help you out of some sticky situations. Saying Sir is not that hard, “yes sir”, “no sir”, “please sir”,” thank you sir”, “let’s do it like this sir”. That wasn’t so hard was it?. That by the way, what I am trying to get at is that some time or the other in our lives we would have to be under some one, be it a boss, supervisor, mentor, etc. Saying sir would help you out.
With 3 months to go, I can’t help but say my time in service has be the Best of times and also the Worst of times. Through it all, it hasn’t killed me only made me stronger and wiser. Almost at the end of my journey, I can’t help but think that another journey is just gearing up to start.
I would leave you with some pictures or two from my journey so far.