Sunday, September 28, 2014

An Actual Ax Accident

Pardon the assonance, but how could I resist?

One of the verities of Scouting is that you will have injuries. While most are minor, there have been incidents of serious injuries and even deaths. Luckily, I have never been a witness to either of these two tragedies.

But when you take a group of boys to the outdoors and add fire, knives, axes, saws, bows, arrows, guns, canoes, swimming, and hiking all together you have a perfect recipe for injuries. I have learned when a scout or scout leader starts an activity with the words: “Watch me do this…” it is better to call 911 first, and then watch the crazy stunt that is sure to follow.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Royaneh Raccoons

When Dad was Scout master and I was still too young to attend Boy Scouts, I had the pleasure of going to two days of Scout Summer Camp as Dad’s guest. Because I was the Scoutmaster’s son, none of the older boys ever teased me and, to be honest, they were all quite nice to me. This made me feel great.

At school, I did not have too many friends. I was small, skinny, and less than coordinated when it came to sports. Sports was the key social outlet for a young boy. So, I was either excluded or purposely excluded myself. Of course, it didn't help being pigeon toed either. Anything that makes you different than others leads to uncomfortable social ostracism.

But scout camp was different. There I was included. I mattered. No one made fun of me. So I really looked forward to going there with Dad.

Of Knives, Fires, and S ’mores

I hope I made it clear that not all of my scouting placed a horrible scar on my young psyche. I had many enjoyable and sometimes laughable times as a scout. So now that I have bored even the hardiest of readers with my personal scouting experiences, I want to take the time to reflect on some of my more happy memories.

The first one that comes to mind was our day hike at the Sunol Park just east of Fremont. Jim and Carol Harris were the Blazer Scout leaders and drove our small patrol out to the park. This was our first true scouting experience as young boys. Our parents weren't with us. He had on our uniforms. Better yet, there was to be a camp fire.