Occupational thoughts

Covering life on the home front.

Wings 2009

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I’m now back from the Wings ’09 scout camp. It was in many ways a successful camp, the weather was a mix of rain and sun but only one person got heatstroke and I stayed in my tent when it rained. It was a jamboree so there were units from many different countries and the campsite itself was really big. The activities on camp were the same set of standard scout activities: Canoe/Kayak, climbing & abseiling on a tower, go-karting, pot-holing, archery, rifle shooting and orienteering. These were presented with other less attractive activities like drumming, crafts and hula hoops. I don’t have the time or the motivation to write a long winding travelogue or diary (I suck at travelogues anyway). Instead I’ll condense my notes to a bunch of bullet points in a lazy yet effective way of summarising last week:

  • Low-flying airplanes are a horrible to listen to. Especially in the early hours of the morning or very late at night. The plane stupid campaigners have a good point.
  • I read some of a book about town planning which I picked up at the central library. It swings between ‘overly complicated’ and ‘kind of obvious stuff I had already figured out’. Che Guevera was passionate about Agrarian Reform, Fidel Castro was passionate about Adult Literacy, Pierre Marshall is passionate about Town Planning.
  • I dug out a dyke/trench with some American girls who gave me 3 packets of menthos and a little medallion-type-thing with ‘God Bless America’ and ‘Made in the USA’ stamped on the backing. I didn’t know what to say because they were so nice and well-meaning. Our goodbye was also a bit awkward because (despite my doubts that we would never see them again) me and Matt made our way to their sub-camp, hung around for a bit looking for them, found them, said goodbye then walked off; the next day they came to our camp and did the same thing. Strange social situation.
  • I attempted to explain to Matt the idea that the terms ‘girlfriend’ and ‘going out with someone’ are meaningless social conventions which pale in the face of true friendship and love. Friendship and love are so close as to be indistinguishable from one another. Society is also geared to favour sexual relations and titles over meaningful bonds of trust. This was in the context of thousands of boy scouts looking for guides and rangers with to ‘hook up with’ on camp. On that note I also wisely differentiated the American girls on camp from Mariah, they are very, very different
  • A guy who was staying in my tent abruptly announced he was bisexual after rumours circulated about him stroking another boy. I offered to put him in touch with the LGBT people who spoke at one of the student meetings but he declined. He’s interesting because I had tried to follow the guide that boys who are overly effeminate do not necessarily turn out gay; I try not to associate being effeminate with being gay. He fits the ‘gay’ stereotype perfectly but nobody wanted to tell it to his face. Anyhow, sucks to him for living up to the stereotype, foolish person.
  • I encountered people with pogo-stilts. They looked mega cool and I badly wanted one, daydreamed about them for a good few hours and asked the parents for a pair for my birthday. They won’t buy me them, instead they’ll just give me money.
  • I made a little Mario figure out of plastic. It looks nothing like the original mario figure from Donkey Kong.
  • On the way back everyone in our bus swore at a cyclist on the side of the road. I protested but was shouted down. I haven’t forgotten the agony of cycling kilometres upon kilometres only to be insulted by someone going too fast and beeping at me to get off the road. Well now I know that my good friends are such ignorant people.
  • I also met some devout royalists and we clashed for some small debate. Windsor is so entrenched in feudalism. Truly amazing.

I recognise that this is a long post and apologise for the lack of pictures, (I don’t know where my camera is)  if you’ll excuse me I have but two more things to announce: I’m going to France on Wednesday (yeah, by airplane, what a hypocrite I am) although I should have my laptop and a portable internet dongle so as to update a bit more frequently. I’ve noticed that my stats have taken a sharp blow as the steady stream of loyal readers deserts to be replaced by anonymous internet people who come here purely by accident.

Secondly, after France I’m going to the Young Communist League summer camp. Now if you think that makes me sound like a crazy communist nut you’re well allowed to stop reading. However, I’m going there because I genuinely want to learn about Communist ideas. Such camps exist in (to put it eloquently) less obvious forms, with the intention to instill within children certain morals or ideas. If you think a Communist camp is bad, take a look at the ‘God camp‘ Nick was sent on and read his reaction to it:

Of course if I get round to actually writing these stories I think that might be a miracle but with God anything is possible. So I’ve decided to rely more on God than I have before and to allow Him to do with me what He wants to.

I’d rather rely on my own motivation to write rather than some inspiration from a divine being; and if all goes well I should be up and blogging in the next few days.

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Written by Pierre

August 10, 2009 at 11:25

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