As you read this, I have set off on my journey to Japan!
Last weekend we had our final Unit training camp at Raywell Park in Humberside County. Besides getting updated with information, and practising things for the Jamboree, one of the main aims of the camp was to have fun and get excited, which was definitely fulfilled!
On the Friday night we met at 6:15 for a 6:30 departure. Once we’d loaded up the bags and jumped onto the minibus, high spirited, we cruised along the motorway for 20 minutes before Dave posed the anxious question “Did anyone pick up the tents….?”. So after going round the roundabout and heading back to Moor House we picked the tents up rather sheepishly and once again set off down the motorway. Two hours of intensive I Spy later, we arrived at Raywell and helped the Humberside half to pitch our tents. After some socialising and a bit of supper we went to bed at around 11 and prepared for another standard early rise (groan).
The next morning, after spending the night under canvas and a terrifying thunder storm with lightning that apparently struck the nearby climbing tower, we rose at 6:15 and reluctantly headed through the fog to the dining shelter to inspect the horror that would be breakfast. Surprisingly it wasn’t that bad, and we started off the day with egg fried rice with vegetables, lettuce, and an odd concoction of tea and orange juice. After this we went and created a packed lunch and packed our daysacks for a trip to the beach. When we arrived we immediately ran into the sea….and immediately ran out shivering. Saturday was basically just a chill day on the beach and we built sand sculptures, and buried an unsuspecting unit member “to prevent him from burning”. It was really just because he was standing in a hole and there was a big spade nearby. After lunch, an ice cream, and mucking around in the sea, we boarded the bus again and headed for Raywell.
When we arrived we collected some firewood, practised some entertainment sketches in patrols, and prepared for tea. Tea was noodles and chicken in a sauce and we prepared our meal for a guest from Humberside too. Following the meal we had a campfire and entertained some Cubs who were also staying on site. The campfire with sketches and songs lasted until around half 10 at which point we went for some supper and went to bed at 11. This time we were wise enough not to play cards!
The next morning we rose at 6 and fetched the food for everyone for breakfast which was scrambled egg, macaroni cheese, and soup. After cooking and eating this we had a few talks going over information about the Jamboree and a bit of a Q&A session. In this talk an announcement was made about myself. A while ago each Unit had to nominate members to put their names forward for raising and lowering the flags at the Jamboree opening and closing ceremonies, and each day on the Jamboree. I decided to put my name forward and to my delight I have been chosen to represent the United Kingdom on the 4th August in raising and lowering our national flag – a real privilege and honour.
After this we Gaffa taped our bags in white to identify Unit 50 (at airports and train stations), and then a coloured strip to identify patrols. We then packed up, had lunch, dropped the tents and wheeled our bags to the bus, only to find a mock train had been constructed. We subsequently developed routines and teams for getting all our stuff and us onto the train as efficiently as possible. After this we played a wide game of cops and robbers with our holdalls on to demonstrate fitness for lugging our stuff around in Japan. After this we said farewell to the Humberside members, and boarded the oven that was our minibus. On the way back we feared for our lives as the rain came on fast. Despite this, Dave got us home safely and I collapsed into bed, content and excited for Japan in less than three weeks.
As this is my final blog, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for following the tale of my Jamboree Journey over the last 15 months and if you have any questions or feedback please get in touch. On my return from Japan I will be creating a presentation so if you would like me to come along to your Section meeting, again please let me know and I’ll get something arranged.
Thanks again, see you after the Jamboree!!