Being a legionnaire in St. Christol is one of the most miserable thing you can imagine when you want to go up, do your bag and go somewhere the same day.
Although the regiment tries to do its best to make life easier for legionnaires
who are going on a training somewhere else, it stays difficult to make a roundtrip when you don’t own a car.
The problem with any type of motorized vehicle is that you can’t own one until you got 3 years of service and passed corporal. This is one of the new rules, which are supposed to make life easier in the French Foreign Legion, taking effect from January 2020.
This time I didn’t have to do this weird type of “pick and run”, but it was still embarassing to traverse the half of the country from Avignon to Castelnaudary with all of my gear.
It something I don’t wish to anyone
Back in those days we had to quit and enter the regiment in our TDF (the ceremony uniform with the Kepi Blanc), which made everything harder.
After a correspondence in Narbonne, I arrived to Castel, took a taxi to the regiment and went to the 5th Specialist Training Company (5° Compagnie d’Instruction des Spécialists). I met some guys from my basic trainings and others I saw while I was doing the selection.
It was interesting to talk with legionnaires from a different regiment. These chats were useful, because I could gather some information about their weekdays, training and get some news about those I did my basic training with a year before.
I enjoyed the stories from legionnaires from the 2nd Foreign Paratroopers Regiment
They talked about their first jump and they found interesting our mountain trainings. I was a bit surprised, because the atmosphere was completely different from when I was in the same regiment but in a different building, doing my basic training.
A German corporal opened the first bottle of beer right after he put his bags on the bed and an instant party started.
Thanks to him, the biggest part of the newly created platoon was half drunk on that hot night in August and some of us could not even stand correctly in attention during the night assembly.
We spent the next few days with administration, reports and with the presentation of the training. I quickly discovered that being a 2nd class Legionnaire in the 5th Company was not much easier than in the 2nd Company where I did my basic training, but I felt a bit more free myself.