I knew no one in our platoon.
It was a mad scramble to find someone with something in common to share and make an alliance with before we went into our bungalow and found our beds. It was pretty easy actually the Durban guys stuck together, then the other English speaking guys. We were the minority, Wayno, Johnny and myself from Durban, we stuck together like glue.
There was only one other person from the Bluff in our training unit, Rudy and he was in another company. I came 100% prepared, I had shaved my hair off and was not going to let them have the pleasure of sitting you down and cutting your hair off as a kind of shedding of your identity ritual, I was who I was and they would take nothing from me, or so I thought.
Wayno was my bunk partner and we stuck it out together, he knew the ocean and was from Durban, there were no other surfers in our unit. I had never met him before that day, 30 years later we are still friends.
It was kind of weird, I had already gained respect from some of the bungalow just because I was from the Bluff. I knew it was going to take something special to get everyone else`s respect.