My first week in Aubagne

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Whelp, made it almost to blue. I showed up on Tuesday at 10 am sharp thinking that's what I needed to do. Then waited for about 10 minutes when a Corporal Chef told me to come back at 2. No problem there, walked into Aubagne for a very nice meal. Walked around and just enjoyed my freedom for the last few hours I had it. Luckily it wasn't raining that day. I show back up and there are 5 other men waiting a Georgian, Ukrainian, Italian, Brazilian and a tiny man from Nepal.
The Corporal Chef showed up promptly when he said he would. And began to check our pullups at the door. Sadly the Brazilian couldn't even make one clean one (practice your pullups fellas).
We got in after all doing the required amount. Then we hand them our paper work and they began to enter us into the system, after which we got our bags searched our phones taken and paper money taken for safe keeping. You can have all the coinage you want. Bring coins! You then take a small iq test just to see that you are not completely stupid. It's not hard.
Now we head to another Corpoarl Chefs office. Where he takes our bags to a closet to be locked away till it's time to shower. Then they send us to "paradise" this is a thirty foot by fifty foot fenced in area that has a small M. A. S. H. tent in it with the sides rolled up and a small trailer that has 4 space heaters only one of which works and no where to sit. Lucky I'm a civilian cause this WILL be paradise when I hit the blue phase.
We go to dinner at 6 pm it's good size portions and pretty decent food. Especially compared to prison. After dinner I spend the next two hours waiting to shower and go to bed. There are about 15 men in paradise with me and surprisingly to me we all have a feeling of comradery no real tension at all. Lots of laughter and trying to get to know each other in different languages. Not exactly what I expected. These men are my competition and my potential brothers in arms. Weird combination. Showers at 8 PM, lights out soon after. There are nicer showers than prison, each had its own stall with locking door but you have to be quick to finish so the next man can get in. The two bunk rooms have roughly 14 bunk beds in each room. The mattress are so much better than I expected.
The next day we get up at five a. m I get up at 4 cause I'm too excited to finally be doing what I've dreamed about for so long. You have to be ready by 5:10 or the Brazilian corpoarl will be very upset with your laziness. I quote "you must be fast in to make it in the legion. For the legion doesn't need you but you need the legion". How true. I am first everywhere because of that speech.
We then head to paradise till 6 am, chow time. You must make a sloppy formation in front of the Brazilian till he says go then you must run, I mean move your ass to get to salles des Manger (the cafeteria). You then form two lines waiting to be given permission to go eat, breakfast is always a large dinner roll with option of butter or jelly or both and a bowl of Cafe or hot chocolate. I load up on butter and jelly for the calories. Surprisingly to me this it's enough to keep me going till 12 when the real meal is.
Done with our breakfast we form another sloppy formation in front of the hall waiting to be released to paradise. Again run run run. You then sit around waiting to take your I. Q. Test.
This test is 3 part spacial acuity and pattern recognition and easy math. The spacial acuity is something I was thrown off by I wasn't sure how I did. It's a picture of a woman standing in between many cylinders and cubes then they give you 4 examples from another view, most of them were straight down and you must decide which is the right view. It was strange.
The next test is 3d shape unfolded in to a 2d image and you must decide what this shape is when folded up. Again not something I'd call myself an expert at. Finally is math and pattern recognition. Not hard math but you must find the hidden variables. This is the easiest part I believe. We lost no one from my group on these test but the next group lost 4 men.
What's next? Yup paradise till lunch. I can't stress this enough you are going to be waiting doing absolutely nothing this entire time. You could bring a book if you thought ahead they will allow it in. But you'll have to get rid of it when you go to the blue phase. I'm glad I brought gloves and enough clothes to stay warm. Even if I have to throw them away later it's worth it to me. I brought shoes and boots while everyone else has wet feet in their tennis shoes my boots are keeping me warm. I don't mimd I will have to get rid of them later. I like not being wet for as long as I can. Plus if I don't make it I will be warm in my travels home.
After lunch we form up and those who passed the iq test get their legion name assigned to them. This name is a name from your home country, has the same first and last initial. I love my new name though I'm not going to say it on here. The legion also gives you a new birthday which is one month and one day from your old one and a new place of birth.
Back to waiting in the rain. Till chow then bed.
The next day you go to medical this is where I got up to, we go there at 7am then a French speaking Dr. Comes out tells us in French to fill out these forms about our medical history using our new names only. Then tells us to strip to our skivves and t shirt. Mean while doesn't tell us what to do with our shoes and pants and jacket. I don't speak French yet and he picks me as an example and starts to yell and shove me to get his point across. I still don't get it. luckily the Georgian speaks French, and before this Dr punches me in the head tells me to fold my stuff neatly in the chair and hang my jacket on the back of it.
Now we get tested for our sight and to see if you are color blind. Then they do a heart rate monitor and a blood pressure cuff. Then tell you to go wait in the hall for the commandant Dr to interview you.
She is a pleasant lady who speaks English well enough. She looks at all your joints and listens to your heart and lungs. Checks your ears nose mouth. This is who tells me that I'm out of training long enough to go to Marseille to get an ekg done to make sure my heart doesn't have cardiomyopathie. I am crestfallen but not broken yet. We all finish our tests then head back so the other men can do their luc Leger and pull ups before lunch. While I wait to be told to go to the Dr. In Marseille.
We go to Chow then I get my passport and phone back told that I can return as soon as I have the paperwork saying I'm cleared for duty. Apparently this is something that happenes when someone is very fit, the machine gives false readings.
So I go to a hotel for the evening, and today I went and stumbled around the military hospital in Marseille to get my heart checked. As I knew it. I'm fine and will go back to Aubagne on Monday so that I don't have to sit in the cage over the weekend. This hasn't even slowed my enthusiasm one bit, I smile every day I get the chance to be here and not back in America. I hope this gives some light on the entry into the legion. When I get back on Monday I'll run the Luc Leger and do my pullups then move to blue phase. Where I'll be back on track.
 
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sounds like you are doing fine ... :) see any Brits there?
 

Joseph Cosgrove

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I know the gist of it from a PM, so I'll wait until tomorrow to read and reply.

I've said it before Buffalo Bill Cody, you're a good man. Thanks for keeping us informed, it's really appreciated.
And I'm not even going, because I've already been :oops:
 
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None as of yet. Though the other American Dax that was on her last week said there was two in the group ahead of his.
 

Perun

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Stay focused ! Bone chance!;-)
 
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Hey Buffalo Bill Cody, thanks for sharing your experience (Thus far). Wish you all the very best.
 

IRL_legion

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Good stuff BuffaloBill. I wish you all the luck when returning, but I doubt you'll need it I'm sure in a couple of months you'll be letting us know you have made it. 👍
 
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That's great news! I've been wondering how you and Dax were doing. Best of luck man. Stay positive.
 

Joseph Cosgrove

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Very good post mate. I'd like to point out that the first Doctor was probably just a legion non-com, it's not because he where's a white over coat that makes him a Dr. Legion Doctors don't punch or kick you !:eek:
I remember once in the kitchen, a cook pushing us around until someone punched him. He got thrown out of course.
Was the Hospital called Laveran, more than likely? Did they explain to you how to get there? I believe you said that they didn't charge you anything for it?
As for the boredom lads, take a book with you. Why not a book about the legion? Or even a pack of cards, no betting though !
 
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Cody,

Well done so far. Keep being positive and thank you for your update which we all appreciate.
 

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Mate

What are the price ranges for tests in Marseille? I take it there is no great waiting time as you’ve already done yours. Also are you able to give the name of the hospital so one can save it on maps before hand.

Good luck to you
 
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but I doubt you'll need it I'm sure in a couple of months you'll be letting us know you have made it. 👍[/QUOTE]

I sure hope so. Still got the Gestapo to deal with.
 
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Was the Hospital called Laveran, more than likely? Did they explain to you how to get there? I believe you said that they didn't charge you anything for it?
As for the boredom lads, take a book with you. Why not a book about the legion? Or even a pack of cards, no betting though ![/QUOTE]

Joe,
Yes the hospital I went to was Lavéran, which is a military hospital. The doctor gave me a piece of paper saying that I needed to get an ekg done and that though I am being sent there on orders from the legion. That piece of paper got me through the armed guard at the gate. The paper also started That I am financially responsible for the test and that the legion WILL NOT pay for it.
As far as did they explain how to get there, no they didn't. All I had was the paper and at the top the Dr. Had written hospital Lavéran, Marseille. No explanation at all. It's a 30 euro Uber ride to get there one way.
When I got there, I went to 3 different floors using Google translate and the piece of paper to find that I needed to get down to the first floor and get admitted first. While I was doing that I asked who and where do I pay and what is the cost. The lady just rubbed her hands together as if saying that it isn't going to cost me anything or that it's not her problem. They did however take my passport and wrote down my real address so the bill might be sent there in the future. I was however admitted under my legion name even though they took info from my passport.
 
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Mate

What are the price ranges for tests in Marseille? I take it there is no great waiting time as you’ve already done yours. Also are you able to give the name of the hospital so one can save it on maps before hand.

Good luck to you
I couldn't get a straight answer for prices on test. But everyone that I spoke with ranging from the commandant Dr back at base and two corporal chefs and one French citizen says that without insurance it could be up to 150 euros but probably no more than 60. The process from start to finish was very quick I spent no more than 2 1/2 hours at the hospital and would have been quicker if I knew that I needed to go to admissions first. Everyone there was very helpful. The hospital is called Lavéran in Marrsille. But you need paper work to get in because it's a military hospital.
 
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That's great news! I've been wondering how you and Dax were doing. Best of luck man. Stay positive.
Thank you sir. I'm not even a little upset this happened I got to go into town and get a bath. Call my mother on her birthday. And go back Monday. Life is good.
 
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