Tuesday, July 12, 2005

 

A Boy Scout Vacation

During the week of July 3 to July 9 I attended Boy Scout with my son and his troop. As a committee member of the troop I participate in as many of the troop activities as I can. I focus on the activities in which the troop needs adults for supervision, safety, and to meet Boy Scout regulations.

This was the first time I had been to Boy Scout camp since I attended Camp Buck Toms in Tennessee in 1963 or so. Interestingly, little had changed since then, except for the quality of the leadership. Superficially, my son's troop may not appear to be any better or much different than most other troops. Hopefully, every troop is as good as my son's. But I doubt it.

Ranging in ages from 12 to 17 years old, the Scouts worked on varying skills from basketry, astronomy, and geology to wilderness survival earning many merit badges and other Scout honors. However, their camaraderie proved to be their most outstanding quality. The older boys readily embraced and supported the younger Scouts. The younger Scouts looked up to the older boys with admiration and sought to emulate them.

Typical good nature joking and banter passed between the boys. By the end of the week everyone had some sort of a nickname given in good humor. At the final chapel service before the closing campfire, the boys, unprompted by any adult, put their arms around each other's shoulders and swayed side to side in unison as they sang each song.

Surely these occasions bring forth the fond, warm memories that create movies and novels, except no tragedies only friendship and warmth. I feel privileged to have witnessed and been a small part of this group during this week.

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