1st BULAWAYO (PIONEER) SCOUT GROUP PIONEER TRAIL Magazine (Aug 2004)
May - Aug 2004 Quarterly Troop Magazine
The most noteworthy highlight of the past few months is without doubt the attainment by Patrol Leader Mark Perry of his Sable Award. This award is the equivalent of:- the British Queen’s Scout Award; the American Eagle Scout Award; and the South African Springbok Award. Mark started working on the Award immediately after returning from the Troop’s expedition to Mount Kilimanjaro in January/ February 2004. Not being daunted by the demanding requirements of the badge, which tests, in the main, leadership and responsibility, Mark set about completing his 120 hours of voluntary service, which must be done in the community and not within the scouting movement, the planning and execution of a four day expedition - using at least two different modes of transport (Mark’s full expedition report featured in the January- April 2004 Pioneer Trail) plus the attainment of various proficiency badges, with great zest. Mark planned his tests so as to have them all completed by October 2004, at which time he would turn 18 years of age and by which age a boy ceases to be a Boy Scout. However, at the beginning of the new school term in May, events took a dramatic turn and it was decided that Mark would leave Zimbabwe for Germany during July 2004 where he would finish his schooling and then proceed to university.
Of interest, Mark is the seventeenth recipient of the Sable Award since 1972 when it was changed from the Queen Scout Award and the first since 1991 when the last one was presented in Matabeleland Province, which makes him the first in Zimbabwe this millennium to receive the Award. To Mark, I extend my congratulations on achieving your Sable Award, it is well earned and you can be justifiably proud of all your Scouting endeavours. I also extend my congratulations to Mark’s parents, Ray and Renate, his sister Joann and brother Michael for the support and encouragement you have given Mark over the five years that he had been a Scout. I have no doubt that Mark will do well in his future career and that his quiet yet absorbing personality will win him many friends.
Succeeding Mark as Patrol Leader of Eagle Patrol is Paul Carlsson. Paul was promoted to Patrol Leader during the campfire at the Parent’s Camp held on 10 – 11 July 2004, in our camp site at Gordon Park. My congratulations to you Paul and I trust that you will continue to enjoy your scouting in your new position.
In the last issue of Pioneer Trail I made mention of our Troop members scholastic achievements. Again, I am delighted to learn and to congratulate Scout Dylan Sandwith’s achievements in the Girl’s College literary competition. Dylan, who is in Grade seven at Hillside Junior School, also achieved first place in the Agricultural Show Society’s handcraft competition. Chayce Zangle who follows a South African home school programme attained excellent results in all his subjects. To Connor FitzPatrick and Dylan Sandwith congratulations in passing your entrance examinations for Christian Brothers College where they begin Form One next year.
The Troop represented by Patrol Leader Paul Carlsson, Timothy Chadwick, Edwin Swannack, Kieran FitzPatrick, Connor FitzPatrick and Dylan Sandwith won the 2004 William Arnold Carnegie Assegai Competition. This event is the principal Provincial competition that is held annually. My congratulations to the Patrol for retaining this coveted trophy, a genuine Matabele Warrior stabbing Assegai, in the Troop for the second year running.
To end off a very full and positive report, I would like to congratulate Patrol Leader Joseph Rose for being the sole Zimbabwean Scout representative at the Michigan International Camporee 2004, which was held in the United States of America from 25 July - 8 August 2004.
The Camporee, which consisted of a home stay period of one week, followed by the main camp from 1 to 8 August was the third Camporee to be held in Michigan, in all of which, scouts from our troop have participated. Following the Camporee, a further two weeks was spent in Washington D C, so making the total duration of the Camporee tour a full four weeks. Joe reports on the Camporee in this edition of the Pioneer Trail.
As we enter the final four months of the year, our programme of activities centres more on the monthly hikes and our meetings at Mabukuwene Nature Reserve. The only major events will be the Provincial Cook – Out competition and the International Jamboree – On – The – Air/ Jamboree – On – The – Internet camps to be held out at Gordon Park and at the Bulawayo Public Library respectively.
And now, it is back to my hammock beneath my favourite Pseudolacnostylis Maprouneifolia with my floppy hat pulled over my eyes as I dream of what exciting events will unfold during the term.
Scout Hike 7 - 8 May 2004
The White Water to Maleme Hike - 2nd/3rd July 2004
In the morning we had breakfast and wrapped up camp.
We then got a bit lost in deciding which path to take but luckily there was a grass cutter going the same way that we had to go. After that everything ran smoothly and I was really enjoying myself. We crossed a few rivers and then walked on a road for a few kilometres before taking a rest. We then walked on a small rural track through the bush. This was a bit rough but it was fun. After walking through the bush we hit a road leading up a hill to the Maleme Dam staff compound. The hill was a tiring climb but we all made it. It was then a nice flat walk to Maleme where the Landy was parked overnight. We drove to Gordon Park where we had lunch and messed around for a bit before returning to Bulawayo. This was the last hike that we had with Mark before he left for Germany. We will only see him again next year when, hopefully, he will join us for another hike.
Parents Camp at Gordon Park - 10th/11th July 2004
After an uneventful car trip, Lara and I abandoned Dad, part of the trio, and puffed our way up to the top of Gordon Park Rock, where the younger, more sprightly folk seemed to be congregating. We watched as, one by one, they abseiled, wide-eyed, over the edge of the rock with only two slight cotton threads holding them on this side of eternity!
I decide to answer the call of adventure and rap-jumped (go down forwards) for my first time. It was exhilarating. I convinced Lara to go and she, along with some of the other girls, were brave enough to make the trip. Towards the end, even some of the adults went down – Bravo! One is never too old…..
After packing up the abseiling equipment we went back to the campsite in Joe’s car to prepare for the campfire later that evening. We set up the wood which Joe and Paul had already collected. While doing this we had quite an animated discussion about how we were going to perform the lighting of the campfire. For lack of any other sane ideas our choices were narrowed down to becoming Olympic athletes or being boring. We chose the former. While the parents were preparing and cooking the food we organised a few skits with the younger scouts. Supper was served and everyone ate heartily.
Then us scouts got into our uniforms and off to the campfire, where everyone was huddled around an empty cold fireplace. I started to talk absolute rubbish while Paul and Joe took their precious time to get ready for the lighting of the fire.
Soon they had been transformed into Olympic runners and along they trundled with their “Olympic Torches” trying their best to look super-human. As Paul thrust his torch into the wood, he almost got his eyebrows burnt off as the wood simply burst into flame. (Just moments before, we had poured enough petrol on the fire to take a car from Cape to Cairo)! Then it was time to sing – my favorite part of the evening. Then for the presentations: well done to Paul who received his Patrol Leader Badge. Paul has been promoted to Patrol Leader as Mark has gone to Germany.
Finally, after the presentation, it was time for the entertainment. A very inexperienced theatre crew had been put together, but from the insider’s point of view, I feel that they performed with all the talent and skill that the short notice gave them licence to. We performed two skits. The first was all about parents on a telephone wire, demonstrating their native intelligence. The second portrayed, slightly more subtly, to what extremes a man will go to in order to style his hair. In closing we sang a few songs and the campfire was over and it was time for coffee and flapjacks – the end of the first entirely Boy Scout organised campfire, which gave us just a hint of how much work and creative thought goes into one small event. Imagine doing it hundreds of times, each time different? Hats off to Norm! This is where I leave along with my small clan back to civilisation and a warm bed – the end of a fulfilling afternoon and evening.
Gumbee and Lara.
Sunday on Parents Camp
When my Dad and I were about half way up we stopped and gazed out over the Matopos – it was a spectacular sight. We didn’t stay on the mountain for very long and after a brief rest on the summit we climbed down, got into the Landy and went back to Gordon Park. After dropping off the FitzPatricks’ at the Lodge, Norm my Dad and I continued to our campsite.
While we had been away, Joe had got a fire on the go and we had breakfast. After a wonderful breakfast my Dad and I packed up our stuff into the car and my Dad went home, as he wanted to be back early. Shortly afterwards Joe left, followed by Chris and his parents.
After everyone had eaten breakfast we went down to headquarters to build some scout trestles and race with them. We built the trestles out of poles and ropes. One person got on each trestle – Norm and I pulled one trestle and Mr and Mrs FitzPatrick pulled the other one. After everyone, who wanted to, had had a ride we went and had a tea break. After tea we took the trestles apart, hanked the ropes and put the poles away. We then climbed to the top of the Leask, which is an abseiling rock. After having a look around the top we went down again and had lunch. Shortly after lunch Chayce and Mrs Zangle left.
We, Kieren, Conner, Sarah, Mr FitzPatrick and I, then climbed through Pigletts, which is a small cave system. After our little adventure the FitzPatricks went home. Norm and I stayed for a while and sorted out a few things around the Park before we left and went home.
William Arnold Carnegie - Assegai Competition - 31 July to 1 August 2004
At around eight in the morning we all got dressed into our uniforms and went to the opening parade where Paul went to register our Patrol. We stood “cooking” in the sun waiting to be inspected where they checked our uniforms etc. After the opening parade we changed and carried on with preparing our campsite. A bit later on in the day we were called to do some tests. The whole Troop was tested on knotting, flag flying, bushcraft etc. This must have taken more than an hour.
That evening Paul, Edwin and Kerrian went out to “Scouting With The Bobmaster” which left me, Connor and Dylan to make spaghetti bolognaisse for supper. Paul and Edwin had to talk about drugs and Kerrian was tested on communications. After supper we went and prepared the campfire with some other troops. The campfire was one of the largest fires I have seen close up and it lasted for quite a while. Around the fire everyone sang songs and told stories. It was great fun and everybody really enjoyed it. Afterwards the A.P.L.’s of every troop had to fetch water to put out the fire. We then all went to bed.
We got up reasonably early on the cool Sunday morning. We quickly had breakfast, which consisted of raw oats (again), and coffee. After our meagre breakfast we all bussied ourselves with cleaning and preparing our campsite for the final inspection later on in the day. At around half past eight in the morning we got into our Scout uniforms and went to the opening parade (which was late). After parade we all attended a short Scouts’ Own, which was quite well prepared by the organisers.
After the Scouts’ Own we had a little time to finish off our STA’s (Spare Time Activities), which we were really thankful for as we had not finished all of them. We had barely finished all our STA’s when the judges came round for STA and uniform inspection. The inspection went quite well and the judges were pleased with most of our STAs. Following the inspection we had another parade where we were told that we had to do some backwards cooking. We diced up some onions, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots and viennas – mixed them all together. We then wrapped the food in a double layer of tinfoil. After the huge fire that we had built had died down into coals, we put the “dish” into the coals along with two eggs wrapped in tinfoil. After about 20 minutes we presented the food to the judges. They were really impressed and I am sure we gained good marks in this area.
We then had the final campsite inspection, which also seemed to go well because the inspectors had no bad comments to say about our campsite. We were then told that we had to take everything down and clear up our campsite. We started taking down the campsite reluctantly, as it looked really impressive. We then waited for final parade. While we were eating lunch Mr. Swannack arrived so we packed everything into his car and were ready to go. We then went to the final parade where we all waited nervously for the winners to be revealed. We were thrilled when we were announced the winners. When we went up to get awarded the Assegai we didn’t know quite what to do and got a little mixed up with our approach to the organiser. After the parade was finished we all gathered together and held the assegai. We were all extremely happy about our victory.
MICHIGAN INTERNATIONAL CAMPOREE 2004.
During our stay with our hosts, we took part in various activities with our camporee troop, which comprised of
Part of our host week we had a great deal to do including shopping. I had a few things on my list and so did Norman. We travelled to many shops and malls looking for the best prices and deals. We also had to shop for ingredients for the International Meal as well as the International Day. Luckily we managed to find all of the ingredients without too much of a problem.
1 August – The Camporee
We had to wake early and get on the road as we had a long trip ahead of us. From the small town of Saline we had to get to Northwoods Scout Reservation near Rose City. The drive took about three hours and we had to get
For the duration of the camp we were all put in different camps, our camp name was Cheppewa. In our campsite we had two troops from America as well as the Czech and one adult leader from Belize who was representing his troop who could not make it because of
Then we just left it to cook while we washed up and got the sadza on the roll. At the end of it all, everyone enjoyed the meal and many came back for seconds. The Czechs had also spent the afternoon preparing apple strudel, which was also very good.
Following the Camporee, Norman and I had a two week stay in Washington DC. This was separate from the scouting programme and was just for the experience. Our stay in Washington was made enjoyable by the Dellinger family, who willingly accepted us into their home. Then it was back home for Norman and to England for me. I was to stay three weeks visiting family and friends as well as a trip to Prague, kindly paid for by my sister and her boyfriend. I had a great stay in England but was still very glad to get home after 7 weeks away.
1st BULAWAYO (PIONEER) SCOUT TROOP TROOP PROGRAMME OF ACTIVITIES FOR SEPTEMBER TO DECEMBER 2004.
3 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
7 School Opens
10-11 Monthly Hike
12 Gordon Park Service: 12.00 noon
17 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
24 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
25 Provincial Cook – Out
1-2 Monthly Hike
8 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
10 Gordon Park Service: 12.00 noon
17 Chuck Wilcox Art & Craft Competition
22 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
29 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene
5-6 Monthly Hike
12 Troop Meeting - Mabukuwene
14 Gordon Park Service: 12.00 noon
19 Troop Meeting - Mabukuwene
26 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene – Sausage sizzle and Report Back on the Michigan International Camporee
2 School Closes
3-5 National Inter Provincial Patrols Competition
6 -10 Chimanimani Hike
12 Gordon Park Service: 12.00 noon
17 Troop Meeting – Mabukuwene (Last meeting of the year)
25 Christmas Day
Pantomime duty dates to be advised
A Volunteers Prayer.I thank Thee, Lord as a volunteer
For the chance to serve another year.
And to give of myself in some small way,
To those not blessed as I each day.
My thanks for health and mind and soul,
To aid me ever toward my goal.
For eyes to see the good in all,
And hand to extend before a fall.
For legs to go where the need is great,
Learning to love – forgetting to hate.
For ears to hear and heart to care,
When someone’s cross is hard to bear.
A smile to show my affection true,
With energy aplenty – the task to do.
And all I ask, dear Lord, if I may,
Is to serve you better day by day.