Tonight’s meeting had 19 Scouts in attendance. All 4 leaders were there tonight and after the Opening Ceremony it was the turn of the APL’s to run the game. They had discussed it beforehand and decided to a game called ‘Chair Bridge’ or ‘Bridge’. First of all they tried to do it in one big group and it wasn’t the greatest of successes but Scouts are adaptable and they tried splitting everyone up into two groups. This was much more successful – take a look at the photographs, it’s harder than it looks.
With the game out of the way it was back to our Pioneering programme. We broke up into two groups to do some new lashings. Fiona and Brendan took one group and did Sheer Lashings which can be used for things like Flag Poles. Ciaran and Alan took the other group and worked on Diagonal Lashing which is used in many gadgets and is really not all that different from square lashing. Ropes are an important part of Pioneering and Scouting in general but it is really important to know how to look after them properly. There are a number of ways to coil a rope and Brendan Demonstrated some of them, the Mountaineer Method and the Sailors Method – he even made a backpack style coil although we did learn that Fuchsia is just not his colour!!! Brendan outlined a number of important things to remember when looking after ropes – something lots of us didn’t know is why it is so important not to stand on ropes. We had many suggestions from the Scouts along the lines of it being a trip hazard but there is another reason much more important. Standing on a rope can cause grit from your shoes to get lodged into the rope, this works its way into the fibres and can begin to weaken the rope from the inside out. I don’t know about you but I certainly wouldn’t like to be half way up a mountain using a rope that is starting to weaken from the inside out!!!!
The Scouts then broke up into their Patrols and practices coiling the ropes with Brendan providing hints and tips to all the Scouts as they practiced.
Fiona explained to the Scouts that we wanted each Patrol to prepare a knot board for the next week to demonstrate some of the skills that they had learned. We wanted all Scouts to take part and to do one knot for the Board.
We didn’t have time for our last game unfortunately but sometimes things just run over!! As usual we ended with our Closing Ceremony, the Symbolic Framework is an important part of Scouting and things like Opening and Closing Ceremonies are a real practical example of how we work the Symbolic Framework into our programme.