So now we’re in school…and with school come school holidays. I don’t know about you (but I have my suspicions), but I don’t have enough leave to take off school holidays (actually, now that I do contract work I have no leave whatsoever).
From my own childhood I remember my favourite holiday memories were going on camping trips with the Voortrekkers, and I desperately want those experiences for Nicola too.
There really is nothing better! New friends, new skills, seeing new places. All more or less safe and lots of fun. Plus a bit of independance…
So this past weekend I went with Nicola on her first camp. It was awesome! She is a natural and took to it like a duck to water. I reckon I’ll training wheel this for another 2 or 4 camps and then she’ll be ready to fly solo
Pretoria people, you don’t get to make snide remarks about Joburg traffic ever again, ‘kay?
We sort of convoyed to the camp site with three other cars. I say sort of since we lost the lead car to an e-tag gate that no one else could go though, and then lost the second lead to a red light that cut the last two off. And then the rest of us just got lost and had to separately navigate using locations that were sent through on Whatsapp.
Eventually we all made it there though…
The kids slept in dorm rooms but adults had to pitch their own tents. It was my tent’s maiden voyage (meaning I had no idea what I was doing). Still managed to more or less get it up before dark, even though Nicola was trying to sword fight with the parts, I ended up with an extra pole and the top sail probable back to front and or inside out, and not bothering with tents pegs because I forgot a hammer and it seemed windstill enough to chance it by weighing it down with my luggage instead.
Where the kids slept.
I had the choice of where I wanted to volunteer, but since I wanted to see how Nicola did on her own I didn’t sign up to help with a course and volunteered in the kitchen.
The kitchen is usually the heart of the camp. Hard work and lots of laughs. A great place to meet new people yourself too.
It was all that…and then some. This kitchen was a little bit understaffed to see to the 215 campers, so we all worked like slaves! If I never see another breadroll in my life, I wouldn’t miss it one little bit.
Pic above it about 60 liters of bolognaise sauce for Friday night’s spagetti.
Everyone washes their own dishes…
This bucket was filled with about 360 eggs for Saturday’s breakfast.
This particular camp is musically themed, so all the courses are music related and so are most of the games.
I sang some songs I haven’t heard in 14 years and heard a lot for the first time too.
Campfire concerts and kuiers – the best!
This is what the kitchen looks like clean and empty. I want a double dry rack like that at home haha!
10 kg of bacon.
My sad looking tent, that decided it wanted to be a kite later that day. Thank goodness for heavy luggage and angels with hammers and storm pens.
Something tells me I may have been better off sleeping outside, rather than with the children.😉
A few pieces of boerewors.
This is how you braai in bulk.
My visitor for a few minutes. I mainly saw her at meal times.
I had to walk quite a bit to go have a smoke…so my feet were soooo filthy!
Fellow kitchen slaves.
Saturday night’s fire lighting ceremony.
This moment right here, is what makes it all worthwhile.
Storm pen…need some of that! Also I will definitely be packing a hammer next time.
Breakfast line up.
Uhm…I was a bit unprepared for the massive cold front that rolled in. At least I packed us each one set of warm clothes.
I was also unprepared for hearing LIONS ROAR Saturday morning. I kept thinking that it must be one helluva snorer in the tent section, but no, it actually was lions! About 3km away apparently, but they sounded like they were in the tent next door. And there I was, nursing my coffee and chilling on my camp chair at 4 in the morning.(I can’t sleep late, don’t know how *shrug*).
Another sign of a weekend well spent.
So how does it compare to way back when? It’s the same, but it’s all different…as it should be, since the kids are all different too.
The uniform has changed
There was not one single flag raising parade
Some of the traditional songs still have the same words, but they’ve been retuned! And they are now sung in different voices! (very pretty)
The camp is run almost exclusively by women now – in the past the split was more or less even but most camp leaders I ever saw were men. I hardly saw any men even leading teams this past weekend. Maybe it’s just this camp? Not sure. I asked a few people and they said that generally it goes this way. Interesting. I wonder why this might be the case?
Anyhoo, we had a blast and I can’t wait for the next one!
Sorry, the beginning’s focus is a bit eratic. The girl in front of me kept moving her head and getting my auto focus excited. Got it right a few seconds in though.