“Stop, salute!” cried the officer in charge. It was Wednesday morning, 21 January 2015. We, the sixth grade students of IICS, were in the middle of a flag ceremony in Taman Budaya, Sentul. We were soon to start our training. What training you ask? We had just started our changes from being students to qualified soldiers. We started singing our national anthem as we saluted, because we all knew that something great was about to happen.
We all arrived early in school with excited spirits to go to Sentul. We then rode the bus and set off on our journey to Taman Budaya. We were doing all sorts of things. Some were eating snacks, some were playing games, and some were just resting or sleeping. There was excitement and energy in every corner of the bus. It took a really long time to get there. “Are we there yet? This is so long! I said in the bus. I was so bored that I started playing a few games with my friends. Finally, we arrived.
Once we arrived, we were greeted by our new officers and were given new army clothes. Mine was tight, really tight! I did not feel comfortable with it. Luckily, they had it in a larger size. Soon, we were all ready.
We started our day with a flag ceremony. Suddenly, I was asked to step to the side. What happened? I stood beside the officers. I was curious to know what I was doing there. An officer the stepped forward. I was actually going to be the boy to receive a symbolic medal from the officer. I felt honored.
Once the flag ceremony ended, we were gathered with our classes. Each class became a team that was led by a certain officer. We were asked to stand straight. We followed our officers as we marched to a muddy field. In the field, we were asked to sit in the mud. “Eeeew! cried some of us as we let our pants sit in the mud. Then, the officers reminded of our country Pancasila and also the song Mars Pancasila.
They told us that we were going to face hard challenges. It will need bravery and focus, but whoever finishes all the challenges without failing will receive a medal. A medal? That cool! We then had some games to test our focus and concentration. Finally, we went to start doing our first challenge. I left that field with determination. I wanted that medal, and I will work as hard as I can to take home that medal.
Soon, we faced challenges like no other. We were asked to balance on a log and walk through it. This log was tied up with ropes and kept rolling. We also had to do many more challenges. Each of them tested our concentration, speed, balance, and bravery.
One of the challenges asked us to dive into the mud and to crawl under a low net. We all got soaked with mud. It was dirty, but we loved it! It was an experience like no other. Then, we had to crawl under inside a car wheel hung by ropes and crawl through it. The wheel was so small, I cannot fit my body in it. I wanted to give up, but I remembered my goal and the medal.
It became my motivation and pushed me to finish my course. Finally, I came out of it. As a final challenge, we all must climb a high tree by a large net. Then we should come down while using the flying fox. It was tall and scary, but I tried it. It was actually amazingly fun!
Finally, all was done. I had been able to complete all the challenges. Even though they are hard, I felt proud because I finally can accomplish it. The officer of my team, Team Grade 6.3, called the whole team and brought us to one part of the park. He asked us if it was hard. I thought, Of course it was hard!
He then explained to us what we can learn from it. We were actually learning to never give up. In life, there will always be hard challenges that we will face, like facing a test or trying to do good, but we must never give up. We must work as hard as we can and try to accomplish our goals. I was touched. I wanted to start following this attitude!
We came back and had another flag ceremony to end our day in Sentul. The time had come to receive our medals. All of us that succeeded received the medal. We all felt happy and proud. Finally, we all had a shower. Wow! I felt great. The water freshened me and cleaned all the mud away. I felt clean and fresh.
Finally, we had lunch and went home. I looked at the window of my bus as we left Taman Budaya. I began to think about what I have experienced that day. We were all mentally changed. We now leave with the concentration and the determination of a soldier with us.
We have been taught to work hard and to never give up. So will I never give up? I know it is hard, but I know I can do what is right. This question is for all of us. Will you work hard and have the determination to accomplish your goals? Think about it! Life could be a hard one. It could push you, fail you, or tempt you to do wrong, but it is up to us to live our lives well. So keep calm and never give up!
~by Nathanael M.W. (Grade 6.3)