Camp, Boyle, Roscommon 2015 -written
by Anna Jeacle
Up and Atom!!!! Calling all Kilmacud Scouts to Connelly Station
Today was the day, the day where many unfortunate members of the public, would have to share a train with us, for 2 hours and 20 minutes.
Everyone arrived at Connelly Station between 10:00am and 10:30am. Karl, Aislinn, Anna & Luke decided to take a quick trip to O'Connell Street on the Luas while waiting, and on the way back, Aislinn missed it while buying her ticket, and ended up running along the tracks. xD
We got on the train with all our gear (and a lot of struggling) at roughly 11:00am. The train ride went quickly with a lot of chatting and card games, and soon enough we arrived at Boyle to meet our bus driver. We stopped off at a Centra to get some gas and dinner then headed to the site.
Once we arrived we pitched our tents, only to discover we were on the wrong site.. Course, we're Kilmacud, what else would you expect?
A quick trip to Lough Key was had to book our activities for the next few days, and of course, it rained. Brilliant!!
Once we were back, we met our neighbours for the next few days who are from Manooth Co. Kildare, and then cooked dinner, which was fajitas with, chicken, salsa, cheese etc.
The evening ended with a four hour long game of charades, which everyone enjoyed and was top notch banter.
A nice, well deserved lie-in was had, with everyone waking up at about 10am. The excitement when we actually saw the branded Wheatos was un explainable, but lets just say theres none left, and poor Colm was left with none and had to eat Rice Krispies, you know what they say, the early bird catches the worm.
After a lot of competitive card games, including Pig, Snap, Spit and god knows what else, Lunch was had which consisted of ham/cheese/ham & cheese sandwiches.
Todays plan was to do Boda Borg down the road in Lough Key, which everyone was excited about! Boda Borg is a challenge, where you go in teams of 3-5 people and enter rooms and try to complete challenges, which are actually a lot harder than you think.. Because if you fail on the last room of a challenge, you have to go back to the start. Ugh, I know.. highly frustrating and a lot of crawling for our knees.. Jim, Karl, Luke & Colm's team got the most out of us all, completing five rooms.
When we got back everyone was starving for dinner, so Karl & Luke grabbed the gas rings & cylinder and started cooking burgers and pasta, which was enjoyed by everyone!
An hour or two after dinner, the lads wanted to go swimming, so they went down to the lake with Paul, while Aislinn, Julia, Aisling & Anna decided to stay with Derek and cub leader Sean and eat some chocolate and chill, and made some friends with our neighbours, the Scouts from Maynooth.
When the lads got back, MORE card games were played, and ice cream was eaten from the truck, but soon later we decided to head down to the weather shelter to play Kilmacuds favourite game, Werewolves.
We played about three games of this and soon enough it was about 1am so Derek and Paul sent us to bed and not a sound was heard all night, besides the odd snore..
Happy August, only one month until school, yay.. I think a lot of us were woken up this morning by the sound of the Maynooth Scouts packing up, at about 9am.
Todays plan was to go on the segways down in Lough Key, which everyone was looking forward to!
At 11:45 we head to Lough Key after breakfast to go on the segways, the first group had 10 of us and after a 20 min training, we head into the woods. Seamus was the first to fall from going too fast which caused the Tour Guide to call the workers back at the centre to bring out some plasters for us, only Kilmacud. Unfortunately it was raining for a lot of our tour but we still had soooooo much fun and everyone enjoyed it. One thing that crushed us was the fact the Guide said theres a fall every three tours, and there was more than 5 from just us! Oh well!
At 3pm we hopped on a shuttle bus into Boyle to do some shopping, lets just say we were highly disappointed on the variety of what to do. But at least the Chipper made up for it.
We got a taxi back to realise about five more troops had pitched sites since we left in the morning. Many groans were had..
Soon enough after we got back the Rovers, Ciara, Louise and Maria arrived and began to pitch their tents on site. They had the amazing idea to use spools and chairs, so a good few of us grabbed some and rolled them back to site. Everyone also discovered that the spools are more fun to stand a roll along than sit on..
Neil and Colm cooked dinner which was spag bol, or for some, pasta & pesto, which was delicious.
After realising theres so many scouts running through our area, Jim, Anna, Neil & Colm decided to build some boundaries which now work quite well if we do say so ourselves.
Luke found a frog which amused everyone for a whole 20 minutes but he eventually decided to put it back where he found it.
We waited for about 2 hours for the Ice Cream truck to arrived, and as soon ad we decided to go down to the Weather Shelter, BOOM, theres the Ice Cream Truck, so almost everyone sprinted back before the new scouts to be guaranteed what they wanted.
Once everyone returned Werewolves was played for a few rounds, and then Charades for a few more. We all went to bed at 12am because we had to be up early the next morning.
This morning there was an early start of 8pm for Kilmacud as we were going to Zipit in Lough Key which everyone was excited for.
Everyone was rushed out of bed, quickly got ready, ate breakfast and we head off.
We got to Zipit at about 10am and started getting strapped into our harnesses. One of the instructors gave us a quick run through for those who had never been before and it all went smoothly. Once everyone had had a turn we could head off by ourselves to do the real deal.
We all had a ball, climbing, cycling, ziplining, and balancing through the trees and surprisingly there were no major injuries! Well done lads!
At 2pm we head back to our site for a second breakfast, as we called it, of rashers, sausages, and pudding, which Julia, Aisling & Aislinn kindly made for us all.
The rest of the day was very chill with all of us just sitting around, playing cards and chatting.
Julia and Jim cooked dinner which was chicken and veg.
We all went to bed at about midnight because we were shattered from Zipit.
Groan, groan, groan... yet ANOTHER early morning, which us sleepy teenagers are not used to..
Today we were heading to Lough Gara stables and no one really knew what to expect. Unfortunately Aisling had to go home early because she was heading to Sweden, and she was dearly missed for the rest of the camp.
Everyone was rushed out of bed and ate a quick breakfast. The bus arrived at about 10:30, so we all hugged Aisling goodbye and head on our way to the stables.
When we arrived we were brought into a room and split into two groups to do our activities. Lets call them, Derek's group, and Paul's group.
To begin, Derek's group went off horse riding, and Pauls set off to the rifles.
I was in Derek's group, so we first got given a horse each, with Sean and Derek getting the two biggest called Flint and Harvey, and Neil and Anna getting the two smallest, which they were not too happy about!
We started off with walking the horses through barrels and guiding them which went grand. Then we moved onto trotting which i for one, could not get the hang of!! Meanwhile Derek was a pro from his teenage years. When this was all done and the horses had pooped, we moved onto rifle shooting, which also happened to be the time of day where the kittens were discovered and everyone got distracted by them.. We got the hang of the rifles easily and we were shooting at plastic bottles on sticks.
When our time on this had run out we moved onto Archery which Julia and Paul were pros at. Thankfully no accidents happened!
Next up was the obstacle course which i can honestly tired me out so much! Anna B (cub leader) was the fastest out of us all so luke was determined to beat her, which he unfortunately didn't.
After this we went back to the barn to where all the cute tiny animals were, and we got the fright of out lives while climbing into the bunny pen, a massive pig half threw itself up on the gate! Our laughs had a tone of fear in them.. But what definitely cheered us up was the sign of maybe a dozen tiny baby rabbits!! They were so adorable and I think every one of us wanted to take one home, besides Colm, who seemed to hate anything small and furry..
Last thing to do at Lough Gara was the Falconry which was really cool! Unfortunately only Paul and Karl got to hold the owl, but all of us got a go of the falcon which was awesome!
When we were done we got the bus to Boyle to pick up some food, and chipper for dinner (yum), and then went back to site to quickly pack for tonight! Because we were bivvying out on one of the islands at Lough Key. Our only wish was for no rain..
At about 6 we head to Lough Key, chucked our gear on the speed boat, and the split into 5's to row out on our own. This went smoothly.
When we arrived on the island we got our gear off the speed boat, and immediately built out bivvys which were extremely standard consisting of tarps and sisal.
We collected fire wood, lit our fire, and cooked dinner which consisted of, rashers, pudding, and sausages.
The evening was full of wind, songs, and yawns, everyone was pretty tired by midnight, so we all head to bed hoping no horrible monsters would attack us in our sleep.
Ew, whats that.. A woodlouse in my mouth? Oh yeah thats entirely normal I swear.. It was an unexpected and not so delicious breakfast I for one woke up to. Aislinn had been woken by the smell of sausages Derek has been cooking, and so had the guys. Julia and myself decided to sleep in a little longer though until it was entirely necessary to get up.
Eventually we were all up, sausages eaten, bivvys dismantled, and gear packed away. The man arrived with the boats for us all to row back, so we hopped in.
We all rowed back quicker than we thought and set off back to site.
The girls head to the showers while the guys sorted out their stuff and then visa versa.
We were told we had free time until 1:30pm, but then Derek and Paul changed their minds and said for everyone to meet in Lough Key at two for cycling. So everyone lazed around for awhile, eating, packing etc. until about 1:45pm came, and whoever was at the site head to the Lough Key Adventure Centre.
We got given our bikes and helmets and set off through the woods smoothly. That is until Trish and Anna got separated from the group.. Fortunately they weren't alone ad they bumped into Julia and Aislinn who were also lost!!
Soon enough they found their way out of the forest and back to everyone else at the beginning, and we all head back to site.
The rest of the day was pretty lazy with a good few of us having naps after getting back from our cycle.
At about 7 Neil & Anna got woken up to cook dinner so they head back from the weather shelter to site with Luke, Luke & Karl.
Everything was going pretty well, until suddenly, the Icelandic was on fire...
Luckily "Fireman Karl" saved is with the water container, and some nice Belfast boys who we thanked later on once the excitement had calmed down.
Dinner was simple, some pork mince with boiled potatoes and gravy which people ate up pretty quick.
An early night was had for everyone because we were leaving the next day.
Last day (sad face). Also, more sad face because it was raining so much.. But at least we weren't going to be there for long.
Everyone got up slowly, got into uniform & packed away their personal gear.
We had a very quick breakfast before collapsing our tents.
We decided to bin the Icelandic, seeing as it was ancient, and no longer usable..
The site was cleared by 11:30 so we just sat around and chatted until 12:00 when our coach was due.
Once the coach arrived we loaded on the tents and all our bags, said our goodbyes to Paul and the rest of the Rovers, and hopped on and got our seats.
When we arrived at the train station we had to wait an hour, so some of the guys went to Centra with Derek to get everyone some chicken fillet rolls for lunch.
We sat around on the chairs in the waiting area because it was raining outside but soon enough the train arrived and we piled on.
This train ride was a lot quieter than the one on the way there, everyone was very quiet and tired. We were all either sleeping, watching movies, reading, or playing cards.
Soon enough we arrived at Connelly. We packed group gear into parents cars, thanked Derek and Trish for our amazing week, and head home in our separate ways, tired, and most definitely in need of showers...