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Monday, March 22, 2010

Cub Camp

Our first camping trip of the year is booked.  Actually, that's not true; it's the second.

Camp No.1 is with the Cubs; of which I'm an Assistant Cub Scout Leader.  Sounds grand, but since 2 of my boys are in Cubs, it's been good to get involved on a weekly basis, running sessions and keeping the pack occupied.  There's another 4 years before son number 3 can join in, but I'll stay... it's good fun.

With the hour about to advance (next weekend), and the evenings getting lighter, it means we can take the boys out for some of their activities - cycling, walking, building bivouacs, etc.

The highlight of the year is camp; this year at the end of May.  We're not going far, and there will be plenty of activities to keep the boys busy.  Hopefully, the weather will be kind, at the very least, dry.

Last year (my first with camp with Cubs) we went to Walesby Forest, near Nottingham, for camp.  There were packs from London and Leeds also present; and the Sunday night campfire ceremony was fantastic.

My duties were in the kitchen, which resembled a set from the TV show "M*A*S*H!! With the ovens, gas-burners, ice-boxes and enough food to power a small army, the logistics were incredible.

Everything from the boys tents, the huge mess tent, the table and chairs, the lighting, the cooking equipment, the food and drink, in fact just imagine an empty field, in which we had to provide EVERYTHING.  Looking back; almost a year later, I am still amazed at how it was achieved.

The schedule was: Rise with the lark to help prepare breakfast, and generally not stopping until sun-down.  Always on-hand to provide refreshments during the day, filling up the water-barrels, making tea / coffee / juice constantly; at the same time preparing the next meal, it was non-stop, it was hard work, but tremendous fun and extremely fulfilling.

More importantly, the Cubs themselves enjoyed it.  For many, it was the first time they had stayed away from home, without their parents, and the responsibility as a leader can be somewhat daunting.  However, undeterred, it was all hands to the pump, as the leaders did everything to make it a successful and fun time.

We're about to start planning the next camp; and I can't wait to get stuck in.  Just pray the weather is kind!
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