Thursday, 3 March 2016

Camping Memories

As a Scout, camping was one of my favourite things to do. It never really mattered where it was or how long for, just getting outdoors, setting up the tents and embarking on all the usual camping activities was always so exciting. Even though sleeping in the tents was usually always freezing thanks to our lovely Scottish weather, I always had a great time. Now don’t get me wrong, the camps were we stayed in a lovely warm lodge with a bed was great too, and sometimes we could even shower. A shower was always a bonus in the world of camping. 

My local Scout Campsite is called Everton and is in a little village just outside of Greenock called Inverkip. It is a relatively large campsite with a great range of outdoor activities including a low ropes course, crate climbing and a zorb ball. The one activity I loved doing at Everton was the slippery slide. It was freezing if it wasn’t a relatively warm day but it was always great. It is surprising how much fun a bit of plastic covered in soapy water can be.  

As a young scout, much to my Scout leader’s dismay, my best friend Linzi and I would always attempt the classic ‘all-nighter’. Armed with a bag full of munchies and lots of pointless conversation, the all-nighter would commence. We would always totally regret this the next day when we were literally falling asleep standing up (Yes that did actually happen). But we never seemed to learn our lesson. It was almost like our camping tradition. Now as a leader, staying up all night sounds like my worst nightmare. I am far too grumpy when I am tired, so the Explorer scouts and the other leaders would definitely not thank me for tackling the legendary all-nighter. 

One thing I always find really funny about camping outside in tents is that when you are inside with the door zipped up, a lot of people forget that they are only surrounded by a thin piece of fabric which means that everything you say can be heard by everyone nearby. This may seem very obvious but the walls of the tent are very deceiving, you seem to forget that they are not even slightly sound proof- well my friends and I did anyway.

When I think back, my favourite parts of camping with scouts was the fun games and of course the camp fire songs. One of my favourite games was the late night wide games were we would just run about the campsite mad, equipped with our glow sticks, chasing after the people in the opposite team. After we completely tired ourselves out, we would gather round the camp fire and sing all the classic songs including Ging Gang Goo, Singing in the Rain (always very appropriate for Scotland), the Pirate Song and one of my personal favourites- the Beaver Song. Yes that song is for the Beaver Scouts, but it’s just so catchy, I love it. 

I have also been very lucky to experience camping on a larger scale by participating in the Blair Atholl Jamborette in 2008 and the 22nd World Scout Jamboree which was held in Sweden in 2011. Both of these camps welcome thousands of scouts from all over the world, allowing each participant to make new friends, learn about different cultures and take part in various activities. Both of these experiences were exceptional and the memories of them will stay with me forever. But, you will need to keep reading my blog to hear all about them in more detail.

Below is a slightly embarrassing picture of me heading off to my very first scout camp. I had a great time and of course, the lovely blue jacket was not so lovely and clean when I returned. 

First Camp

I have so many great memories of camping with the Scouts and I still enjoy it as much as I did when I was younger. Although I always had a fantastic time at camp, one thing I always remember is how much I appreciated my bed when I got home. After a weekend in a tent, my bed always felt 100 times comfier when I would climb in after camp.  
About Lauren Anderson

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