MFO Sinai South Camp 1982Why start a website about my time in the Sinai Desert with MFO after 35 years? Perhaps it’s nostalgia, something you seem to get more of when you’re getting older. But probably it’s just the fond memories and warm feeling I still have of one of the most amazing times in my life.
This week something triggered me when I was going over old photographs and noticed a few of my recently digitised slides which I took during my 6 months tour in the Sinai Desert. I remember having a fabulous time there and being away from home for 6 months was a great experience for me, coming from a tiny village in the west of the Netherlands. I’ve forgotten a lot of things over the years, especially as I never went to reunions afterwards. I also never went to one of the Veterans Days, I’m just not that kind of guy. Shortly after my return from the Sinai,in the summer of 1982, I left the Navy and never saw any of the people I served with again. I never really looked back, until now.
After going over my old photos I searched for MFO related websites and came across a site with a list of names from people who served with me in the South Camp in that same period. After doing some more research I also found a few closed Facebook Groups and posted a few of my photos there but it just so happens I’m not such a great fan of Facebook. I rather share my experience on a website where everyone can read my story and see my photos. Not that I think my story or photos are more special than anyone else’s. Many of you who served in the Sinai have similar stories and perhaps far better photos. It’s just that this first rotation was unique. Everything had to be started up, taken care off, there was no regularity, no normality, no defined tasks and the Israeli’s had only left a couple of days before we arrived. I remember Naama Bay was deserted back then, there was nothing there!
It was one big adventure and I loved every minute of it.
I was based in the South Camp and was one of the so called quartermasters of our small Dutch delegation who arrived in the Sinai in January 1982. Our job was communications which, for me at least, turned out to be one of the best jobs available. Shortly after my arrival in South Camp I worked for American contractors who were installing the telephone system in the buildings on the base. I had no 24 hour shifts like the others and had an unusual amount of spare time as I only worked a few hours in the morning and a few late in the afternoon. It was just too hot to work during the daytime when temperatures often reached 40 Celsius and sometimes more.
So much for my wee introduction, there is more on the other pages. The site has a lot of photos and various sections where I wrote more about the beginning of it all, about life in the MFO South Camp, our trips in the area and further afield and our time in the SCC’s, I think it was SCC5 and SCC6, not sure here. Let’s hope my memory serves me well and please correct me when I’m wrong ok? I love to hear from you!