Course Over

It has been one hell of a stressful month. My goodness gracious! There were definitely some downs and I got to the point a few times were I didn’t think I’d make it. But I persevered! I picked myself up and moved onwards. My second last course, Power Supplies was quite tricky and I just passed the practical exam, nearly failed it. I was fine with the theory, it was the fault finding that tripped me up some.

Moving onto Multistage terrified me. I was excited to be in the final leg, but at the same time worried I would fail miserably. We were no longer fault finding using Lab-Volt but rather and actual black and white tv (with was as old as me, 30). The theory wasn’t too bad, but oh the fault finding… I struggled so hard with it. The main issue for me was that it wasn’t really introduced well. Or at least I didn’t think it was. The practise exam I pretty much bombed with a pathetic 60%. For those of you unaware, anything below a 70% is a fail for us. So you could say I was really flipping nervous about going into the actual exam the next morning.


The final practical went incredibly well for me. I did way better than I had expected. I was nervous about a couple faults, but for the most part I felt confident. And when I got my final grade of 96% I was elated! I felt on top of the world! I wish I could have said the same for a couple of other guys on my course. We had two fails. Unfortunately for the one it was his final strike and that meant recourse. The other guy, since it was his first exam fail was given the opportunity to do a retest the next morning. IT would seem luck was not on his side as he failed it again and will be recoursed. It’s really sad to see them both go so close to the end. They were both good students.

This morning we had the dreaded knowledge retention test. It’s 50 questions based on EVERYTHING we’ve learned in the past 8 months. I was terrified. There’s just so much content to study and know.


Granted a good chunk we should be very familiar with because they’re concept we’ve been using in multiple courses. But then you just don’t know how in depth they’ll go with certain things. And since there’s a number of different versions of the retention test, talking to people who’ve graduated is nearly pointless. Some versions are theory heavy, some have more calculations, some have more fault-finding related questions etc…

After I finished, I felt so unsure. There were a few questions were I was split. Waiting in the canteen to find out the results were nerve-wracking. So much was riding on this. If I failed I would still have a retest, but I don’t know how well I would have done if that were the case. However, needless to say I passed! When I saw my mark I wanted to jump up and shout YATTA!


It was like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders! All my hard work, all my studying had paid off. Now all that’s left is to do our graduation parade and then head back to Borden, when I’ll start my next course a few days later!


Yesterday just seemed to be full of fails. First, I had stupidly not reset my alarm clock. So instead of waking up around 9am I was woken up at 7:30am. I didn’t realize this until it was too late. I have a little morning “ritual” so to speak. I lay in bed, listen to the news on the radio, get out of bed, stretch and walk over to turn my radio off. It was when I turned off my radio that I noticed the time. My body was too awake to go back to bed. So, I went and made a coffee and started my day early. But this has me thinking now, I may just want to move my wake-up time to earlier now. So perhaps for the next few weeks I might try getting up at 8, then slowly move back to 7. I guess you can call it prep for getting into the Canadian Forces. Well at “boot camp” (BMQ) your day starts at 5am with PT! And it’s get up, do PT, then inspection and then you get to eat! So my morning habits will have to change.

So I tried to go for a jog yesterday morning. That did not go very well. I think I’m not 100% over my cold yet, that and the air was till a bit nippy. I couldn’t breathe properly while I was running, which made it hard to keep up a good pace. I was hoping I could go back to how I use to be. I maybe jogged a 1/4 km before I had to stop. Stupid lungs not working like they should. But also stupid me for being overly optimistic given that I’ve been sick the last few weeks and haven’t done much exercising period. But it was above 0 and I wanted to take advantage of that! Oh well, should have waited until the afternoon. I’m planning on doing that today. It’s supposed to go up to 12! Double digits!

My legs are sore now. I’m sorry legs, I know you’re not use to that. It also probably didn’t help that after my failed jog I decided to climb the stairs in my building instead of taking the elevator. I live on the 6th floor. I really felt the burn on that. But it was also prep for “boot camp.” The dorms don’t have elevators or the recruits aren’t allowed to use them or something like that. So guess what that means? Lots of stairs! It wont be too bad, I’m kinda use to that. Well, it’s been awhile but my high school prepped me for it in a way. My high school had 1 elevator and they only people who could use it were students with disabilities. You needed to get a key from the office. My school was 3 floors, plus the basement which had classrooms. Yea, lots of stair climbing.

I did a bit more studying/practicing last night. I think I’m getting better? I hope I am. 1 week people! 1 WEEK! This time next week I’ll be done the test. I’m more nervous than anything now. Before I was excited but then I came face to face with the harsh realities that my math skills aren’t what they use to be. I’ve become too dependent on calculators, that’s my issue. Time to re-memorize the multiplication table!  I’m not too bad really, it’s just the multiples of 6-8 that always mess me up for some reason.