In 1970 I was posted to South Vietnam for service with AATTV, Australian Army Training Team. Specifically the MATT teams, Mobile Army Training Team element. These were teams of six members spread throughout Phuoc Tuy province to assist and train local PFDF and RF soldiers of the South Vietnamese army. I served in three Matt teams during my time in Vietnam, first at Hoa Long then Lon Son Island followed by Ang Ngai at the base of the Long Hai mountains, home of the dreaded D445 Viet Cong battalion. Long Son island gave me my first introduction to actual physical warfare. At the time I was with the Matt team there, we had only four members comprising the team. I was allocated the task of accompanying a section of the PFDF for a number of days on a reconnaissance and surveillance exercise. Our camp site was a high mountain hilltop that overlooked the whole island. Our surveillance located a number of Vietcong in the mangroves along the shoreline, miles away. Their location was forwarded to base for follow up action, we were then ordered to advance further up the hilltop for investigation as activity was reported in that part of the hilltop. We moved out in platoon formation and proceeded up the hilltop, from here on in my story loses time, suddenly gunfire opened up all over us, it was coming from further up the hill, I hit the ground and tried to get orientated to what was happening, suddenly a hand grenade landed about six feet away from me, I froze, I couldn’t move, everything went quiet, I knew how long the grenade would take to explode, I counted the seconds, I could smell the earth, I heard the wind and felt the peaceful calmness of the blue, sky above. I couldn’t move, I got to 15 seconds in my counting in my mind and realised the grenade wasn’t going to explode, soon as I realised that it wasn’t going to explode, all noise came back to me, shouting and gunfire, I started running up the hill but did not fire as there was nothing to fire at, It is a habit I learnt later that in a firefight it is a natural instinct to fire even if there is no enemy to see. We reached the summit of the hill and located a number of freshly vacated VC campsites. The pursuit was called off and documents and cooking utensils were recovered. That was my introduction to an actual contact; I had other contacts later in my service in Vietnam. But I have never forgotten the contact when the grenade never exploded, that was the day the world went quiet for me for fifteen seconds.