“It’s My First Day”: A subaltern’s first day at the Regiment.
By 2nd Lieutenant Charles Prince
4 Feb 2009
I had successfully become trade qualified, and earned the honour of being badged. This now meant having to leave CFB Gagetown, and report myself to Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians) at CFB Edmonton. This situation, though exciting, can also cause a new subaltern some anxiety, and some related questions as to his new station in life. Allow me to share with you some questions that came to me as I experienced my first day as a subaltern with LdSH(RC) on 8 Dec, 2008.
Where am I? Followed quickly by, “where was I going”, and “how was I going to get there”? Lucky for myself I had already received a proper welcoming package from the Regiment, including letters of welcome, manuals, and most importantly, maps. Thanks to this, locating the Harvey Building was straightforward, and meeting with the Assistant Adjutant was without incident. The package had also answered my “what do I wear?” question with CFs on reporting and a change of combats for later.
The next question that came to me after arrival at the Regiment, was “where’s the kit shop?” Which was quickly followed by “how much?” I was now properly attired for all physical endeavors with the Regiment. And since we had arrived just in time for sports day, I was now ready to ask, “what’s broomball?’. Apparently it’s some sport where grown men run around on ice with a big stick after a ball.
The end of the day brought me to my most important question, “where’s the officer’s mess?” Due to the Regiment receiving a visiting Major from our newly affiliated unit in the Polish Army we all went for beer call, and I was quickly introduced into the social aspects of Regimental life. The day had passed quickly, I had found answers to my questions, and I was looking forward to my next days as a subaltern with Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians).