Posted on 03-Sep-2014
July 19th, 2014
They say if the meeting is scheduled at 0800 hours and you arrive at 8 a.m., you are on time. Here in 12th KL, and I believe this is similar to other Companies, if you arrive at 8a.m., you are 100% LATE! The rule of thumb is - for the NCOs, we are never late, we always arrive early. Having been notified of the NCO Council Meeting, by 7.45 a.m., almost three fourths of the NCO Council has arrived, all either adjusting each uniform parts or arranging tables and chairs for the session. By 8 o’clock in the morning, the NCO Council came to order.
We were all present; 18 NCO’s, comprising of 12 Lance Corporals, 4 Corporals and 2 Sergeants and the Officers in audience are including one Staff Sergeant and one Instructor, all in blues and whites sat in a circle on chairs facing each other. Our faces, however, are devoid of our usual cockiness or sarcasm. We all discussed the current affairs with regards to the operation and running of the Company with the Members’ interest at stake. Much deliberations and meaningful ‘debates’ were brought to attention highlighting the situation of our fast growing Company. Having a total of 11 NCOs on board, our captain also led us into a lengthy discussion of the duties of an NCO; what is expected of an NCO, the customary dos and don’ts of an NCO. As for the Senior NCOs, it was a refresher course to them. The Officers feel that the Council needs to be re-aligned to facilitate further healthy growth of our beloved Company.
At 9.45 a.m., we had a short break. After that short break, we planned the future of the Company. For me, it was an eye opener, as a Private back then, I did not know what NCO Council Meetings are like, nor did I think that being an NCO was just a ‘walk in the park’. Everything now seems more serious, somehow, but at the same time I have enjoyed every minute of it. Call me nuts, off my rocker, insane - may be all three.
At 12 noon, we quickly packed and prepared to depart for our lunch at Ipoh Chicken Rice at Jalan Gasing, Petaling Jaya. We received an invitation from 8th Petaling Jaya Company welcoming us to witness its 1st Annual Enrolment and Awards. We were very excited and couldn’t wait to make our presence felt there. We reached the restaurant about 12.45pm. Our Officers, including two parents who had volunteered to help ferry some of the NCOs, discussed on the menu. We had a sumptuous and wonderful lunch comprising of 1 whole chicken, pork, fish balls, pork balls, bean sprouts and some clams. We had a wonderful time of fellowship. Even at the lunch table, I could hear some discussions were still ongoing on how to further improve the individual Departments.
Done with our lunch fellowship, we went off to Pantai Baptist Church, the home of 8th Petaling Jaya Company. Upon reaching, we saw many familiar faces that we have met during the recent BB Pesta 2014. Almost immediate, we felt at home after being given warm welcome by the Officers and Members of the host. Smiles and jokes were shared around and laughter was heard.
As with its usual BB customary practice, 8th Petaling Jaya Company’s Enrolment and Awards Service began with the inspection of Guard of Honour. The Guard of Honour was received by the Selangor State Commissioner, Hon. Captain Richard Lee. We then were ushered into the main hall to proceed with the occasion. Once again, the emcee welcomed all guests, parents and friends alike before passing the mic to the Praise and Worship team. The team led the congregation into a high praise and worship session. I noticed how differently how things were done here; the Praise and Worship Team were already on standby even as the Members and parents began to fill the main hall. Similar to our Enrolment Day, they had audience and guests from other companies like, 1st Kota Communing, 2nd Subang Jaya, 1st Petaling Jaya and 4th Petaling Jaya. An Officer all the way from 18th Penang was even there! It was wonderful.
We could see that the Members, boys and girls, Seniors and Juniors alike were excited, eagerly anticipating their Awards, Badges and not to mention their Promotions. They have a big group of Juniors and Seniors receiving their various awards and badges after having worked through their sweat and toil. Our Captain was given the honour to give away badges to their Juniors too. We were entertained by their Band, singing and dancing teams which took part in the recently concluded Pesta 2014 in Kampar. The memory of Pesta still lingered on our mind. The highlight of the day was the promotion of the NCOs. Some of the NCOs were discharged due to academic commitment overseas and some were appointed to join the Officers Council as Staff Sergeants.
The service ended at 5 in the evening. We then proceed to have our light refreshment in the canteen. Now having recalled my two Firsts – first timer attending NCO Council and first time visiting other Company – I could say that it was an unforgettable experience. The Boys’ Brigade spirit will move on!