Finding the Joy of Joining BB – A Story of a Young Private

Posted on 22-Oct-2014

Written by Corporal Brendan Eu Che-Jie or 12th Kuala Lumpur Company

September 20th, 2014

The new academic year 2014 has unveiled and it’s time to meet the new Recruits. As my Company is based in a local private school, Wesley Methodist School Kuala Lumpur, all Form 1 boys are required to join Boys’ Brigade for one year. The orientation for the Form 1 students was held on 31 December 2013 and we (the NCOs and some of the Privates) were called back to help out during the event as our Captain would be promoting BB to the new students and parents. I could sense the excitement among my fellow NCOs then.
The fateful day soon arrived and we met the new faces. I could remember seeing all those confused and anxious faces of my new Juniors – the Form 1’s. And out of all those 85 Form 1 boys, I am glad that some of them have found the joy of joining BB and enjoy coming to every Parade. One such Recruit, who is now a young Private, is Private Chew Jian Xun. Smiling, he related to me, “During my first or second day in WMSKL, myself and other Form 1 boys were told that we must participate in Boy’s Brigade. During my first day in BB, I was nervous since I’m new to BB. I’m also confused and unused to it. However, after a few more parades, I’m more comfortable and relax.”
Although he is not in my Squad, I got to know him better during the parade and from the Boot Camp. As it is customary in BB, all Recruits are required to participate in the 3-days-2-nights Boot Camp. We had our Boot Camp from 4 – 6 April this year. This year’s Boot Camp was special as this is the year that all Year 2 Privates are required to come back as a refresher course and to help out too. Jian Xun, just like any other student, felt rather reluctant to join. Yet he made it a point, since he had to come, he might as well come and make the best out of it.
I asked him any part of the Boot Camp that are still fresh in his mind and he mentioned our trademark games – Capture the Flag and Clue Hunt. “At the first night, we were playing Capture the Flag – a hard game to play as good strategy is required, if not, it is almost impossible to win the game. On the Saturday night, there is a clue hunt. We need to observe our surroundings carefully, if not our precious clue will ' fly away'.”  Both games aimed to make the campers be aware of their surroundings and to work in team to survive through the games. Jian Xun, being a quiet person, really enjoyed the games and eventually the games actually helped to build his self-confidence to take lead and to speak in the public confidently. 
I could see that Jian Xun has slowly enjoyed coming to BB, learning so much on BB knowledge during the Target Class. “I learned a lot of things in the BB. Second day itself, I could remember clearly, we had to learn to be disciplined in drill. Many of us were punished when we failed to execute the correct drill sequence, ” recalled Jian Xun with a cheeky smile on his face. Drill and Discipline are part and parcel of a Brigadier’s life and Jian Xun has gotten used to this “punishment system” in the BB. Sometimes he was so blur that he needed that “encouragement” to wake up and to be alert of his surroundings.
Target class was another highlight of Boot Camp that still lingers in Jian Xun’s mind. Our Officers would go through the BB Handbook page by page, highlighting specific details to take note of. Jian Xun, though felt uncomfortable sitting for so long, remembered jotting down notes as our Captain or Officer went through each section in the book, especially on the Awards section. Jian Xun reminisced, “Even though it is uncomfortable to sit on the chair for a long time, it still good for me to have more knowledge about BB and it also trains my patience.” Well, Jian Xun, congratulations for having sitting through the long hours of BB knowledge drilling and having passed your Target Award!

Jian Xun also joins our Drumline, under the training of our Percussion Instructor. As far as I know, he has been faithfully coming for every practice session, rain or shine. I really admire his passion in BB and in drumline. Initially he only played the cymbal. Now, he is able to handle the snare drum. Kudos Jian Xun!

Jian Xun, being exposed to BB for the first time, has quickly adapted himself well to the many Christian practices in the BB. “Every time before we have our breakfast, lunch or dinner, we need to sing Table Grace. Although I am not a Christian, I am still happy to sing it because it is a kind of respect to Christian's Gods. In fact, we need to memorize the most important 3 songs in order to pass the Target test. Even the songs are long and the tones are not the same, I still manage to memorize them smoothly,” remarked the young Private softly.
It has now been almost ten months since Jian Xun has joined us. I am glad that Jian Xun did not drop out from BB and even joyfully said that he will still be around next year. When I asked Jian Xun how he has enjoyed BB so far, he claimed, “Other than Boot Camp, I also have a great time during the normal parade. In the parade, we learn more steps during the drill time. During games, we can choose to play almost every type of games, which are available from 11am to 12pm. From 1p.m. to 3p.m., there is drumline practice. The lesson is instructed by Mr. Haziq. There are instruments like snare drums, base drum, tenor drum, and cymbals. The lesson is fun and interesting.”

Last, but not least, Private Chew Jian Xun couldn’t agree more that BB is not just drill and drill alone but, “As you can see, Boys Brigade is a fantastic co-curriculum activities, that’s why I had decided to join fully. So, come and join us, the 12th KL BB Company!!”

Page Created: 22nd October 2014
Last Updated: 22nd October 2014