WHATS GREAT ABOUT FOXTROT SQUADRON?
What’s there in a name? ” That what u call a Rose, by any other name would smell as sweet” said Shakespeare.
But there is certainly something in a name called FOXTROT – a name – a name of one of the 12 (now more) Squadrons in NDA (National Defence Academy), Khadakvasla, Pune India.
Ever since I joined the Foxtrot e group, I have wondered if there is any connection, any link, anything common between for example General Shankar Roychowdhury who served as the 18th Chief of Army Staff of 10th NDA Course and Lt Rakesh of 116th NDA Course who both form extremes of the 700 members who are now a part of the Foxtrot Squadron Group. Even five decades have not been able to create a barrier in the spirit of this group. The ‘josh’ with which the group is growing and developing is some strange emotional phenomenon I am trying to understand.
All 12 Squadrons in NDA ‘were’ just the same in construction. Even when I try to critically look for a difference, I can only say one was facing the Dhobi Ghats and the second was facing the Cadets Mess and so on. And then even that changed. We shifted from one building to the other. But what remained the same was the name ‘Foxtrot’.
We had a Social Get together in Mumbai in Jun where I saw a young lady on the stage ask the same question – Is Foxtrot a building made of stones and concrete, or is it a culmination of values, traditions, culture? You had to see the pride in her eyes when she said that both her father and her husband are from Foxtrot Squadron. We have many such combinations of father – son, brothers etc who are Foxies (as we proudly call ourselves).
What is strange, but very powerful is this unique, unexplainable thing called esprit de corps. I don’t know what it is but I can feel it when I get goose flesh, or I feel something running up my spine. It connects people of diverse backgrounds, behaviour, temperament, age and bundle them together into one thing – like in this case Foxies. So when I meet people in Delhi on 10 Jul, I am meeting Foxies, no matter who is he, what he does, where he belongs to etc. Isnt that great!
I am trying to understand what are the factors that drive this spirit. What makes people travel long distances to meet people you really don’t know. What makes you hug people who are strangers. Why should ladies who have no connection whatsoever with no nostalgia factor, join their husbands to meet ‘his’ some friends are most virtual friends – all because they are Foxies.
I will be very happy to invite responses to this question and lets see if our research proves a unique theory!