[Joining] Another experience in Aubagne

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The following story was written by a EV of 29 years old that went to Aubagne to selection and gave up voluntarily before finishing the whole process. The guy did not became rouge. Once he was in Aubagne he realized that the Legion was not for him and walked out from the selection after 4 days.

You can find it, here:
https://es.scribd.com/doc/112645900/YO-ME-PRESENTE-A-LA-LEGION-EXTRANJERA

It's a very worthy story to read for people thinking to join. The story has good insights and for that reason I want to share it with all non spanish sepakers

Here is the translation:


I WENT TO THE FOREIGN LEGION
FIRST PART

Whoever may be interested in this experience has to know that everything I write is conditioned by the expectations that I had generated with the information I used on the internet, for the desire to do something for what time had already passed and for a personal need of realization. Therefore, I warn that this is my experience with its corresponding conditions and particularities that in no case may be those of third persons or those that you will experience, reader, if it is your desire to live this.

Fortunately or unfortunately my decision to join military life was late, in Spain the age to access the armed forces is limited to 29 years old. However, someone told me about the French Foreign Legion, which I thought was only an epic body already in history. But it was not so, I searched the internet and my path was illuminated again, I still had a last opportunity to live the adventure that inside me always wanted to live. The truth is that the information available on the internet was not very clear, too many gaps about the selection process, details that for which we were weighing the vital decisions: where to present? How, when, what to carry, what not to carry?

Deciding wheter or not to join the Legion was not easy task, I had to weigh many factors, my family situation, my work situation and my age. Well, I was single, with a stable job, but nothing exciting and with 30 years. And the age was important because even though the age limit is 40 years, they make it clear that the candidates with more possibilities are those who are between 20 and 30 years.

Once I decided to join I didn't like going without a Plan B, the economic situation in Spain in 2012 was not very good and saying goodbye to a job to go to an unintended future was not a very good idea. For this reason I took 20 days of holidays from the job before going to Augbane.

I booked a flight straight to Marseille on April 16, 2012. I had been advised to introduce myself in PILE Perpignan. But I decided to introduce myself directly to Marseilles, because time could run against me and the language did not matter to me. Later I discovered that it would have been better to introduce myself first to Perpignan.

During the previous 8 months I prepared myself physically, many miles in the legs, many push ups, many tractions, many abs. The tests seemed easy on paper, but you had to run a minimum of 2600 meters in 12 min, make at least 5 tractions on the fixed bar and surpass the Luc-Leger in at least 6 sequences. You really have to be trained to overcome this.

I arrived on April 16 and there I was, at Madrid-Barajas airport, ready to leave behind my life, my family, my friends, my partner ... everything, because when one decides to go to the LE has to be clear That everything is behind, if one can pass the entrance tests and the training period, practically disappears from the world

I arrived at night in Marseille and had a reserved pension because until 8:00 am the recruiting centers dont not open and my appointment was at the same time the next day, of course, although it is not essential, it is advisable to make an appointment, Festivities and you can touch wait several days.

Following the barracks at Marseilles, the gracious lieutenant drove me to the general headquarters of Aubagne, surrounded by enormous mountain ranges. Once inside, they took the inventory of my belongings, by the way, who had not brought a phone, as they were advised not to wear it, the candidates do not have to be allowed to communicate with the outside during the period of instruction.

Another interview, now I was asked again my marital status, my police background (here they do not want anyone who has had to do with drug trafficking, rape or crimes of this caliber). I assure you that they have the means to investigate it and if INTERPOL sends an unfavorable report, you will probably return to your home, perodetenido. If everything is fine, you become a candidate, you still have some time until you want your history and the truth of your data in my case were 24 hours waiting in a zone separated from the candidates who were already testing, I was still uncivil . During that day we only had to wait, but not much, in a barrack adapted as a games room, we could socialize with the other candidates. There he met a very wealthy Guinean, living in Spain, two Brazilians who had elite sidomilitaries in his country, a Spaniard who had broken fuses and who for some reason was thrown on the first day, ah, and a Mongolian who spoke nothing More your language. The fact is that almost everyone who was there spoke at least two languages, all between the ages of 23 and 30. The comradeship began from this moment on. We had to do some work, after the meal we were ordered to lift the carpet from that game room, which cost us to remove at least 2 hours. We dine and sleep at 22:00, always separated from the candidates and volunteers by a fence,

On the morning of April 18 we were woken up at 6:00 a.m. for breakfast and at 10 am they were already calling the selected for the next phase. We got 10 of them, took our backpacks and went to quartermaster, they undressed us, they gave us two changes, a black shirt and a tracksuit. If you did not have sneakers they would give you an appropriate ones. They give you a bag with a bar of soap, a razor, two rolls of toilet paper, toothbrush and toothpaste, sheets. If you have some money you can only have a maximum of 50 € in cash, the rest of belongings are stored in a warehouse. We were already candidates and we were no longer civilians.

We immediately went to the area where the rest of the candidates were (with a green shirt and shirt) and with the volunteers (in camouflage suit and already selected for the training period at Castelnaudary). They made the first tests that same morning, the psychotechnician, in which the questions were spinning, mathematical and spatial vision. The psychological, with personal questions, complex and eliminatory. In these tests 60% of the candidates fall and I can say that it is here where one demonstrates if one has a well-furnished head. Out of the 10 of my group, there are only 5, the rest home. However there were two girls who had already appeared before and had passed this test, so they noticed that repeat it. Immediately we did the Luc-Leguer and the 7 tractions, then I realized that I had wounded in my preparation. It was not trying to do the minimum, but to have the best score, well, the fact is that I passed it to my score in the psychotechnicians. If you do not pass the physical tests you have to wait 6 months to be able to present yourself again and if you do not pass the psychology you do not have another opportunity until 18 months later. We joined with the group, about 60 candidates plus 30 volunteers. This is the moment when one begins to know what the selection tests really.

I spoke with everyone I could, because not everyone spoke English or Portuguese or Spanish, but in fact I was dedicated to analyzing the situation, the type of people who were there, what their lives counted, their purposes, the results of their lives.
 
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SECOND PART

At one point a warning sounded and we had to run to form a "caporal" or corporal called the candidates to form a group or to do the rest of tests or for tasks in the barracks, cleaning, assembly of things, cleaning dishes , Serving meals ... etc, whatever, because that was already a job. My first job was to clean the kitchens, which I do not care, but I have to say that only with water can not be scrubbed, that's what I say everything

To eat, all in formation and to the order we fired to the dining room where previously also had to form and of course to enter in order. The food was really good, varied and well cooked, something that surprised me pleasantly. After the meal we lined up and returned to the selection area. A Caporal called the group in that I was still in black shirts and we were sent to the infirmary for the first medical examination.

Vision, urinalysis, bone revision and possible physiological problems. If there was something strange in the urine they would send you out, you would pass again into civilian life and you would have to do a more complete analysis in a clinic in Aubagne, some did not return, they went directly to their homes. I passed without any problem. The following orders were to clean all the windows of the "small hospital".

Dinner time. During this dinner something happened to me, I think it affected my final decision. A "Caporal chief," a man about 65 years old, quite crushed by his life. He turned up and asked if there was any Spanish in the dinning room. The man only wanted to give encouragement to his compatriots. He was from Andalucia, like me, so this "caporal chef" was excited to talk with me. He told me that I had to teach everyone how our race was. The presence of this gentleman affected me a lot, not because of his comments, he had left behind his life that he did not or did not remember having a family in Spain or France, his life as a military was finished, she was only a lieutenant waiting for the retirement that awaited him in a geriatric of the LEF where they spend their days working and making wine in the hope of a slow and lonely death among comrades who have only been able to overcome the lifetime.

After dinner again to line up and to do some other work before going to sleep, the conversation with that comrade struck me so much that I do not even remember what was what I had to do, clean dishes or throw the garbage, I do not remember. Before going to sleep, all to line up and distribute us by rooms. Quick and running shower, make the bed, leave the room unpolluted. We went to sleep at 11:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. on that day April 19 I had to wake up two comrades who were fried and less bad because if they had not cascaded the whole group.

Next morning, before breakfast, a few pushups and as we had not done well, instead of hot chocolate we got coffee. I was already a bit nervous and dumb, because I was realizing the LEF was not my place. It was simply not the "adventure" I was looking for, nor the future I wanted.

After breakfast, again to line up. They called us, the group that we were to do the cuper test, we all passed, I got my 3000 meters and that's it. Now we had the green shirt. And after a shower, to sign the contract with the LE. Once the contract was signed we proceeded to a second medical review, and a battery of interviews. My first interview was with a colonel and I had to do it in Portuguese, they asked me the reasons why I wanted to enter, my origins, my studies.

At the end of this interview, another time and again in Portuguese, with a lieutenant of Brazilian origin. Again the same questions and you can not fail, that is the choice. The waiting, the interrogations of the coexistence, everything counts. There was only what they call the "GESTAPO" which is an interrogation of 4 hours in front of 2 or 3 psychologists, but that was waiting for me the next morning.

That day there was still work to be done, cleaning, I was commissioned to organize the cleaning of the kitchen. In the afternoon the assembly of a tent and again to clean dishes. It was an intense day, especially for the time I had to share impressions and experiences with the other comrades. This last day ended up opening my eyes because I realized what the lives that are going to give to the LEF: young people, disciplined with a medium-high level of training, good people in whose countries, families and homes there was not a future for them. And the legion offered them a future, a reputation and a decent job.

No, it was not my moment, my life was good, not easy, but it was good and I could only complain about silly things. My time to do the military career had passed 10 or 12 years ago. In the end I realized that I did not belong to that world, so as soon as I could break my commitment I'd do it.

April 20 was a hard day for me, one of the most difficult, even harder than the day I had arrived there, because the feeling of camaraderie had already penetrated in me and I was part of something important.

At the end of the breakfast, during the training, a corporal asked if anyone wanted to return to civilian life; I presented myself and I got called to a last interview. A colonel tried to make me reconsider my decision, He offered me a second chance up to 3 times. Maybe, if I were held for a while longer I would have endured, but I'm sure I would have endured another week, just that and I do not like to waste anyone's time.

I would return to my house, but not before doing some cleaning work.

At 13:00 they returned me my belongings, they made me sign a contract for which I promised not to claim any property to the LEF and I was paid 20€ for each day I worked there. The only thing I wanted to do was to get back home as soon as possible, so I took a train to Perpignan, got there and from there to Barcelona and Madrid. It was a long, hard and sad journey, reflecting on my decision, I can not say that I was happy, nor sad, rather disappointed or chastened.

Life had just given me a great lesson, and it was just in the making.

And this is my experience, something that I never want to forget, something that has changed me forever, that I believe, has made me a better person and that I hope that if you are thinking about enlisting you keep in mind and values ​​well what you have in Your life, because you sit the decision in time you can hit but if not, it may be too late.
 
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#3
Sensible, thoughtful guy, you realised that the legion life wasn't for you, that things weren't all that bad and left.
 

Nickfury

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ThNks for sharing bud, good read !

Off topic; nickfury delete some of your mail please
I say how to contact me on my profile. No one likes to read. :D You could even just send an email from my profile as it is an option you can choose when setting up your Cervens profile to allow people to email you at your personal email rather than PM. Give it a shot.
 

dusaboss

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Hmmm. The guy decided that was not for him. OK, better than after one year. Lot of guys give up that way and I can't see clear reason. These days is easy to find out what you can expect when you go there. Don't know how that many became surprised and give up.
I'm preparing myself mentally for that along with training. That's why didn't soon as I started to write on forum said that i want to join. I was on 50% - 50% then. As time progressed my desire grew and now I'm on 85%. I will never be 100%, but that just my way o thinking and 95% is pretty much absolutely sure for me.

I wouldn't say never but don't know what needs to happen for me to give up on my own. Who knows. It's stupid to speak about it until ain't been through.
 

Nickfury

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Hmmm. The guy decided that was not for him. OK, better than after one year. Lot of guys give up that way and I can't see clear reason. These days is easy to find out what you can expect when you go there. Don't know how that many became surprised and give up.
I'm preparing myself mentally for that along with training. That's why didn't soon as I started to write on forum said that i want to join. I was on 50% - 50% then. As time progressed my desire grew and now I'm on 85%. I will never be 100%, but that just my way o thinking and 95% is pretty much absolutely sure for me.

I wouldn't say never but don't know what needs to happen for me to give up on my own. Who knows. It's stupid to speak about it until ain't been through.
Guys build up a fantasy in their heads and when faced with reality and the kinds of men in selection they just lose their nerve or "self select" for failure as I like to call it. They feed themselves some story that makes them feel good about giving up. They start saying they have to leave because of their family or job or girlfriend or they come from a good family and don't belong with "these people and have options or want to get married etc...ALL things they should have known before they went right?

Some did know but just had to go to clarify that it wasn't for them. Long days of cleaning and testing cut off from the outside world and surrounded by rough and tumble guys from every corner of the earth seems to wake some who came with dreamy ideals up from their reveries. Some went there all gung ho, but then panic and make a story that allows them to quit with a 'good' reason when they see or feel that they won't fit in and that most of the guys there NEED to be there and have NOTHING at home, so suddenly these 'self selector's" original reasons for joining feel inadequate in their own minds.

But **** that shit. It doesn't matter if you come from a nice cushy middle class family, if you have the metal and toughness and backbone. Regardless of where you come from, if you have what it takes to stick with something no matter what and truly want to be a soldier and can't do that back home for whatever reason then stick it out. It won't be easy and it won't be a 'dream', it's a hard life but if you can accept that, then never 'fail' yourself before you even start, like so many of these guys who go and just talk themselves out of it before they even get selected or who opt to leave in basic before they even make it to regiment. What's the point?

Anyway it's for the best in the long run. If these guys have serious doubts in selection then the life obviously isn't for them. Many more find out in basic and then in regiment.
There were guys that only stayed a few hours or only one night when I was there, some were looking for easy money and joined on a whim, then, realizing it was just hard work they quickly left, others were serious mama's boys you lived at home and probably were great killers in online games and when faced with reality they ran home back to mama, papa and playstation. :)

It was funny to see guys disappear so fast...the other big reason guys disappeared quickly was drugs. Guys literally came when high or had been using in the last few days, talking about drugs and so on...a couple seemed like fine guys, just party dudes and it wasn't the place for them. :D

The best thing is when you are there are find out it IS for you and you feel at home and at peace among the madness and feel like you have finally found some brothers that understand you and have the same crazy dream and need for something more than an ordinary life. :) It's an amazing feeling.
 

darkwood

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Deciding wheter or not to join the Legion was not easy task, I had to weigh many factors, my family situation, my work situation and my age. Well, I was single, with a stable job, but nothing exciting and with 30 years. And the age was important because even though the age limit is 40 years, they make it clear that the candidates with more possibilities are those who are between 20 and 30 years.
Can somebody please explain this? Is this true?
 

dusaboss

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Can somebody please explain this? Is this true?
It's not true. Even if they don't think so they clearly say “you all have same chances.â€￾ Nobody will say “You old f*ckers better go homeâ€￾. I mean, I sincerely hope they will not say that. :)
(...) The best thing is when you are there are find out it IS for you and you feel at home and at peace among the madness and feel like you have finally found some brothers that understand you and have the same crazy dream and need for something more than an ordinary life. :) It's an amazing feeling.
I'm totally dig this! Didn't understand in first month of my exploration of FFL, but now more and more I do. I really hoping that I will be among people who are more like me then rest of the world. At least everyone who goes through that gates have to has sympathy for adventure. And it's one of rare places where you can truly meet people from every corners of earth. I think I will be happy among guys there: just hoping that my service will not end after one week or two. I would feel very bad if that happens :(. In the last month I really started to like that institution.

Nick when you and others say about this guys who fail drug test I'm confused. How someone can go high trough the gate ? C'mon that is really serious lack of discipline. And test is not first day when you come in. What mean that you have to go high through gate in order to be positive on urine test :)
 

Nickfury

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I'm totally dig this! Didn't understand in first month of my exploration of FFL, but now more and more I do. I really hoping that I will be among people who are more like me then rest of the world. At least everyone who goes through that gates have to has sympathy for adventure. And it's one of rare places where you can truly meet people from every corners of earth. I think I will be happy among guys there: just hoping that my service will not end after week are two. I would feel very bad if that happens. :(
In last month I really started to like that institution.

Nick when you and others say about this guys who fail drug test I'm confused. How someone can go high trough the gate. :) C'mon that is really serious lack of discipline. And test is not first day when you come in. What mean that you have to go high through gate in order to be positive on urine test :)
They don't always test guys the first day, but usually they do. One guy got kicked out first day for drugs, another a few days later, maybe they admit things in the interviews or they do more detailed testing of some guys who admitted past drug use ...just to be sure.
 

Nickfury

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Can somebody please explain this? Is this true?
Your chances go down after 30 a bit, after 35 a lot. Younger guys have less preexisting injuries, get injured less, recover faster, have more energy in general, are easier to train/indoctrinate, have a chance to serve longer, advance in the ranks higher, make a full career, etc.
But that said older guys have more mental toughness, some are still in great shape and can outperform the young guys, they have the maturity and emotional stability to see them through rough times that sees a lot of young inexperienced guys desert of **** up in some ways (drugs, alcohol, women) etc.
 
C

cujo6688

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Thank you for this post because i'm going soon to tryout in Paris to hopefully start my new life in the FFL

happy holidays wishes
 

darkwood

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Next year I will be 33 in June. Well, I realize I am not the youngest but for sure I am in sport all my life and never had a serious injury. I can run 3200 m in less than 12 mins. still. I have trained using U.S. Seal physical fitness guide https://www.usuhs.edu/sites/default/files/media/mem/pdf/navysealfitnessguide.pdf

I have found on the internet 7 years ago. It is a damn hard but with right motivation it is achievable. Everything is in your head.

I have served in the army when I was 19 and although I had more explosiveness in my body yet in my mind I was still a dumb kid and thinking how to party and get laid rather than being a soldier. Mental side was a wreck :D The motivation now and then it is incomparable. I still think how to get laid that didn´t change though. :D but it is a whole different story. I guess when you have some life experience tried different kind of jobs and you still think serious about having a military career I guess you should go for it.
 

dusaboss

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They don't always test guys the first day, but usually they do. One guy got kicked out first day for drugs, another a few days later, maybe they admit things in the interviews or they do more detailed testing of some guys who admitted past drug use ...just to be sure.
Man, most of drugs are undetectable in urine after just 3 days. So in order to be positive you really have to go be high while going through gates. :)

I can run 3200 m in less than 12 mins.
For real? That is very good result. When you planning to join? Am same age as you. I will probably try this spring.
 

darkwood

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Man, most of drugs are undetectable in urine after just 3 days. So in order to be positive you really have to go be high while going through gates. :)



For real? That is very good result. When you planning to join? Am same age as you. I will probably try this spring.
Yes. That is one of the norms for joining BSD in Croatia. It was a challenge I´ve wanted to achieve and did it. The one I have left to do is 4800m in less than 18 mins. That is a tough one but achievable.

I will go in the spring too. Maybe late winter. I have to extract a molar that didn´t grew up right. That is a shitty thing to do.
 

dusaboss

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I have to extract a molar that didn´t grew up right. That is a shitty thing to do.
Yes it is, believe me I pulled out two. It's really puts your manhood on test ;) My did not yet grow out of gums when I needed to pull them out so it was hellish 2x45 minute for me. If a tooth is grown up (it is in your age) it would be easier to pull him out.
 

Nickfury

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Yes it is, believe me I pulled out two. It's really puts your manhood on test ;) My did not yet grow out of gums when I needed to pull them out so it was hellish 2x45 minute for me. If a tooth is grown up (it is in your age) it would be easier to pull him out.
I'm the King of "pulling out" but as for wisdom teeth I had all 4 taken at once the day after my high school graduation. What a present. Then my buddy picked me up and proceeded to order a large pepperoni, mushroom and olive pizza and eat it in front of me as I was starving and told to only eat liquid food. I guess that's what friends are for. I said the hell with it and spent an hour eating one slice with only my front teeth like a rat nibbling on a hunk of cheese. Victory! But nothing like hearing the doctor crack your teeth and then feel him digging around and pushing on your face to pull out the chunks and then cleaning out the bloody holes in the back of your mouth with a squirt bottle for weeks. :D Good times.....good times.
 

darkwood

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Yes it is, believe me I pulled out two. It's really puts your manhood on test ;) My did not yet grow out of gums when I needed to pull them out so it was hellish 2x45 minute for me. If a tooth is grown up (it is in your age) it would be easier to pull him out.
My case is for the oral surgeon rather than dentist. Only the tip of that wisdom a**hole is out the rest is in so we need a little gums cutting here. Maybe its better to do it during the service in the Legion. First my manhood will surely be put to the test and after a date with the Legion dentist I will surely qualify for the "Français par le sang versé" and get my citizenship before everyone else. Two birds with one stone, down. :) :D :D
 

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