Dear Mom and Dad,
What a day! I’ve been so busy I almost forgot to write.
Did you know there was a full moon last night? I did, because it was like a prison searchlight shining into my Adirondack all night long! Between the light, all the boys talking in my tent, Mr. Boyce snoring on the other side of camp, and the crickets chirping… I don’t think I slept more than about two hours. Mr. Satterfield said that I might have slept a little better if I didn’t eat my whole bag of candy before bedtime, but I don’t really think that had anything to do with it.
We got up early so that we could clean up our cabin before breakfast. Our cabin looked the best of all the new campers, so we offered to help some of the other new scouts. I heard one of the scoutmasters say that he had never seen a first-year Adirondack as clean as ours.
You’d be proud of me. I brushed my teeth AND took my medicine this morning.
We went to the flagpoles to watch the flags get raised before we ate. Every troop gets to raise the flags one morning. I’m hoping to get to help when it’s our turn. Mr. Satterfield must have realized that it was a really bad idea to keep our Rush’s shirts in a plastic bag all week, because he had us wear them again today. We won’t find out what we are wearing tomorrow until the morning.
Breakfast was good today. We had French toast, sausage links, cereal, milk, bananas, and orange juice. I don’t think there is anyway that Sarge could have messed those up… but nobody ate the bananas. The bananas were pretty ripe… I don’t think anybody has wanted to eat them for the past few weeks.
We sang the sausage song after lunch, and even though I had eaten my sausage, the counselor at my table let some of us use his to act out some of the lyrics to the song. The song talks about “Mr. John Trebek”… I think he is the man on Jeopardy, but I’m not sure why they wrote a song about him eating sausage.
We officially started the Woodsman program at exactly 9:00 am. Drew Barton helped me to tie lots of knots. His dad is the camp director and his grandmother (everybody calls her “Mom”) helps to inspect all the campsites every day.
We learned a lot of stuff in Woodsman, and we took our swimming tests to make sure we wouldn’t sink when we were learning the stuff for swimming merit badge. We’re going to learn to use knives and axes before we come home!
While we were in the Woodsman class, the older boys were going to other merit badge classes. Lots of boys were taking things like canoeing, cooking, small boat sailing, and fish and wildlife management. Chaz Jabbour is taking game design, and it is taught inside the dining hall. AIR CONDITIONING!!!
Lunch was gross, but I know that a good Boy Scout is supposed to be prepared. I turned my yucky-ham-and-cheese sandwich into a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. The chips, cookies, and bug juice helped a lot… but I was still hungry later, so I had to use some of the money you sent to get more ice cream sandwiches at the Trading Post. Mr. Montgomery made a really big salad to stay healthy, but I’m hoping you remember what I explained yesterday about ice cream being a vegetable… I like my choice better.
Some of the boys already moved to a different rank this week. Carter Boyd passed his scoutmaster conference and his board of review for Second Class this morning, and then he worked with Dr. Dunbar to finish his first-aid merit badge tonight. He even had to breath into a dummy to practice CPR!
One of the cabins has a hole in the roof, so Mom and Grandpa brought us a tarp to put on top. Will Lawton was brave enough to climb the roof and get everything fixed, but we aren’t supposed to climb on the roofs if something isn’t broken. Maybe you’ll let me climb our roof at home when I get back?
Several of us went swimming after classes were over this afternoon. Even Mr. Montgomery and Dr. Kobes were in pool with us for a while, but they got into some trouble for not following the rules.
Lots of other boys played frisbee in camp or practiced Ultimate Frisbee on one of the fields. I heard that Bradley Johnson is better than a lot of the older scouts!
We went to the flag-lowering ceremony just before 6:00 pm. You can probably tell from the picture below that Troop 1 isn’t very good at making a straight line. The scouts folding the American flag took a really long time to get it into a triangle, but I did my best to be patient and to stay still. I remembered learning in Cub Scouts that I was supposed to give the flag-folder as long as he needed out of respect for my country.
Supper was great, so I guess two out of three meals today isn’t that bad. We had chicken nuggets, macaroni and cheese, a roll, chocolate pudding with cookie parts in it, and iced tea. I’ve seen macaroni listed as a vegetable at Wades lots of times, so I know I’ve covered all my healthy food bases for the day.
I’ve been really impressed with how well some of the scouts clean up. I think Walter Montgomery would sweep the entire dining hall if somebody let him, and Beckett Ferguson looks like a professional cleaner.
After supper, some boys played nine flags with the counselors, some boys spent lots of money at the Trading Post, and Dr. Dunbar and Mr. Montgomery practiced shooting in the scout-leader-shoot-out. (Don’t worry – they shot skeet, not each other.)
I think everyone is back at the New Shirmer campsite now. There’s lots of noise from all over, but it really just sounds like everybody is having a good time.
I’m thinking about getting some sleep before too long. I think I get to set things on fire tomorrow in the Woodsman shelter, so I want to be awake for that.
Mr. Gage printed the email you sent me. Thanks for sending it! Please tell Grandma and Grandpa that I love them, and please give Grover an extra dog biscuit. I know he probably misses me.
Lots of love,
Soon to be a Tenderfoot scout
P.S. – I think it is working pretty well to just sweat away the dirt instead of taking a shower. Nobody has really seemed to notice yet, and I didn’t get the Ho Non Waddle.