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This is a question Have you ever started a fire?

I went to sleep with candles burning - woke up to a circle of flame on the rug. Thought, "Tits. Better put the rug in the bath and turn the taps on." TIP: Don't put a burning rug into a fibre glass bath. I caused about £5000 of damage to the house and was coughing up smoky black phlegm for a few weeks. Can you beat that?

(, Tue 2 Mar 2004, 17:48)
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I was one of about three people that my grandfather actually remembered.
He would forget most people existed the moment they walked out of the room.
I kind of liked that he would say "Alex!! Have you joined the army yet?!" each time he saw me. At least he recognised my face.
For this reason, I thought I would make him happy during his final few years by signing up to the C.C.F. (Combined Cadet Force) Army Section... thus enabling me to say "Why yes i have Granddad!" the next time we saw each other.
Now i should explain that I didnt't really want to sign up... i only did it to make him happy.
Anyway... as expected, he was thrilled that i had joined, so much so i half expected a salute each time i said hello to him.
A couple of years later when he'd finally had his chips and popped his clogs, i was left drowning in the overwelming homo-eroticism that is the British Army CCF. I didn't really want to be a cadet anymore. However, something i failed to realise when i signed up, was that you have to be a member for at least 4 years (so they told me 2 years into it), so i requested a tranfer into the RAF section instead.
It turns out the RAF CCF is even more GAY than the Army CCF, so i made it my goal to be chucked out of it as fast as possible.
Here's where the fire comes in.
We went on a 3 day expedition on a proper forces training ground somewhere in derbyshire i think.
We had been supplied with 3 day ration packs and a bivawac for sleeping in.
We were marched in squad formation to the area our sections camp was based, which was fine, except I was at the back of squad with three of my friends, who were just as bored with the whole thing as me...
We stopped marching. Everyone else carried on without noticing and within 20 seconds we were stood alone in the woods watching our squad left-right-left it around the corner.
Oh what fun we were going to have.
As predicable as can be, we set about making a camp for ourselves. This consisted of a four shoody bivawacs and a fucking MASSIVE fire... and that's about it.
We kept the fire going for a day and half with a well-thought out fire wood collection rota, this worked well, as at one point the flames were three times the height of me. it was great.
Now I think back, it's amazing we didn't get found sooner... but halfway through the second day we were discovered.
A female american CCF NCO who we knew from school walked into our camp just as one of my friends was completing his 6th "Watch me jump through the fire" routine and screamed "WHAT THE FUCK HAVE YOU GUYS BEEN DOING?!?! EVERYONE IS LOOKING FOR YOU!!" apparantly, the weekends activities had been cancelled and our entire squad had been made to march around searching for us. We were not popular.
Yeah right. As soon as she was round the corner we were all either jumping on or pissing in the fire trying to put it out.
And would you beleive it... it worked. The fire went out and we threw earth all over it... and you really couldn't tell there had been one. We packed up the bivawacs as quick as we could and just ran in the opposite direction to the NCO.
We rounded a corner about 100 metres away and lay over the crest of a hill to watch what would happen when the NCO came back.
A couple of minutes later she returned... with 4 very official looking army blokes in tow.
I was giggling to much to realise how much we'd pissed these people off and watched with great satisfaction as the NCO started making "BUT I DON'T UNDERSTAND! THEY WERE RIGHT HERE!! THE FIRE WAS HUGE!!" body language.
We thought we'd got away with it when one of the scary army blokes rummaged around in some leaves and pulled out a smoking twig no more than 4 inches long. That was it. We were fucked.

"GET YOUR ASSES OVER HERE!!" he yelled randomly into the air, obviously hoping we were still in the area.
Well... this is it lads. We all got up and sheepishly walked back to the camp and got the most severe bollocking of my life off one of the now aubergine-faced army chaps.
Myself and Tom, as the biggest members of our breakaway squad, were made to walk 10 miles with a massive plastic container as punishment.
For the first 5 miles, we thought it was a piece of piss and were laughing about how the Forces were so GAY, but then after arriving at our destination, were told to fill the container with water and take it back to where we had just come from.
That sucked. I dont know if you are aware of this, but massive containers full of water are REALLY FUCKING HEAVY it turns out.
Hours later, we arrived back at the camp with the fucking heavy water container and were made to pour it all over the ground where we had lit the fire. It was pointless... the fire had been out for hours by this point but that didn't stop them making us do it.
In retrospect, i suppose it was a great punishment in regards to the crime we had committed so i don't hold any grudges. Anyway, it is a great memory of mine so thanks CCF.
Best of all, after those 10 miles, i was never made to do CCF activities again.

(, Wed 3 Mar 2004, 13:42, Reply)

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