Monday, August 03, 2009

Cub World at Camp William B. Snyder Day Two

I slept in a little, so Alex and I had to rush to breakfast, just making it to assembly before. The best part was that coffee was delivered to camp, so, I was able to fuel up for the walk to the dining hall! Alex was at a loss for words for the pack check in procedure, so, he just said “Pack 285 is here”. Other packs, most with a lot more boys, had nifty little cheers, like “Pack 35 is alive” etc. Some simply said “Pack ### all present and accounted for, sir”, mimicking the staff patrols.

After breakfast was the big dig. The boys really seemed to enjoy it, the setup was that Ripley had hidden clues in the sand, and the boys had to find them. They really liked entering through the tunnel. After finding all the buried clues, which added up to look in the tower, the staff climbed into the tower and retrieved the clue box.

After the big dig, the group moved on to nature, but instead, I took Alex to the pool for his swim test. I didn’t expect him to even make beginner, but he wanted to try, and I knew that it would be good for him to try, so, he jumped into water over his head, freaked a little, kicked himself up and grabbed the wall, end of swim test. As they were filling out our buddy tags, I mentioned that there was no need for me to pass the swim test if Alex was a non swimmer, but they told me that I would need to be a swimmer to take Alex, a non swimmer on a boat. I didn’t want to miss nature, so I didn’t take the swim test right away. Alex missed some of nature, but he enjoyed what he saw, he liked looking at all the insects in bottles. They talked about geology, something Alex had already done, and used a baking soda and vinegar volcano to learn about the scientific method. We got a great clue at nature! That Ripley had earned a congressional award. Now, these aren’t your ordinary summer camp staff people, they are some of the best and brightest that the Boy Scouts of America has to offer, and several had earned congressional medals.

Next came lunch and siesta. We didn’t really use the siesta time for taking a nap, we worked on the scavenger hunt with others from our camp instead. Alex wasn’t liking that too much unfortunately. I guess, not everything that seems fun to adults works for kids, at least not all the time. We did pass a neat looking caterpillar though, that held his attention for a bit.

After lunch and siesta was the pool session. Alex didn’t seem to mind being limited to the non-swimmer section of the pool. While he was with his buddy, I took my swim test, which consisted of swimming the length of the pool four times, three face down, and one on your back. The first three lengths were no trouble, but when I was on my back, I could not swim straight at all, I think I covered two lengths zigzagging. I got my buddy tag updated as a swimmer and joined Alex in the shallow end.

The final scheduled session of the day was the ship. On the ship they learned about port, starboard, bow, and stern. They all got to raise some flags, followed by a life jacket drill where they all had 20 seconds to get their life jackets on. With their life jackets on, they climbed down the cargo net for some more activities inside the ship. They had to figure out a code to open the ammunition boxes filled with water bombs, which culminated in a water bomb battle, where Captain Shea got the worst of it I think.

They encourage the boys to wear their uniforms for dinner, and Alex wore his for all three. While not all of the boys wear them, I like the uniform and I encourage (ok, sometimes force) Alex to wear it whenever he has the opportunity. The ham for dinner Saturday night was great! Alex didn’t eat his, so, I ate it for him!

After dinner was free time, there were several activities available. Alex chose the planetarium, boating (paddle boats), and BB shooting. All good choices, except the planetarium was very hot inside. We enjoyed learning about constellations, and the boys got a good demonstration on how and why Polaris stays in the same spot in the sky, and how to find it. The most anticipated activity of the evening for Alex was the boats, which is why I took the swim test! I think this may have been Alex’s first time ever on a boat of any kind and it was very exciting for him. My camera batteries died while taking pictures at boating, but I got a few. Our final free time event was BB shooting, which Alex enjoyed, even though he didn’t hit the target at all. He had taken his glasses off to put on the safety goggles, and it was starting to get dark. It is amazing how much fun a boy can have missing a target five times!

Back at camp we started a fire. I pretty much left that up to the other dads that were there, mainly because I forgot my matches, but I am one heck of a fire maker and couldn’t help but help keep their flame growing after they used up about three quarters of a Washington post. We roasted some marshmallows and turned in for the night, well, Alex turned in and I took a shower. Overnight we had heavy rain for a considerable period of time, starting with some strong thunder storms, with the thunder coming basically the same time as the lightning a few times. We didn’t get too wet, so that was good, and Alex slept through the whole thing!

1 comment:

DiZent said...

Sounds like you guys had a good time