Dear Mom and Dad,
I can’t believe that camp is half over! I don’t want to come home! Today was a really big day for me. I hiked five miles, I passed my scoutmaster conference, and I passed my board of review. I am now officially a Tenderfoot scout. That means I’ve earned my second rank on the way to Eagle! I have to earn second class, first class, star, and life before I earn my Eagle scout badge. I can’t wait!
The day started out great. We got shirts with Burd Satterfield and some of the older boys on the back! A few of the guys were a little sore from our awesome victories last night!
One of my friends had a little trouble walking that wasn’t due to the games. Now I really know what the Ho Non Waddle is. He had to use a lot of Monkey Butt, and when he jumped out of the trailer, there was a big cloud of smoke coming out of his shorts! That was enough to convince me to take my first shower this morning, so I smell a lot better than I did yesterday.
When we went to flag raising this morning, there were a bunch of girls raising the flags! Dr. Dunbar told me that they were in a girls troop. I don’t think Camp Ho Non Wah has ever had girl Boy Scouts before. Somebody actually told me that we are all just “Scouts” now… but I think I’m still going to call myself a boy scout.
John Mullen got to say the Ho Non Wah grace on the microphone. He did a great job.
For the wind and the water
We thank thee, O Father,
For Friendship and Brotherhood
We pledge our service
And for the food before us,
We are ever grateful.
You will never guess what we had for breakfast. I’ll give you one hint: IT OINKS!!!!! We had grits, eggs (they smelled like sulfur), cereal, toast, orange juice, and SAUSAGE. That make six meals with pork. I’ll help you keep count, because I know it must be getting hard.
Mr. Boyce told us to save our toast so that we could sing “Yeah, Toast!!!” after we ate. That was probably the best song of the week.
We got ready for the Woodsman hike right after breakfast. I’ll be honest that I was a little worried about going so far in the heat. There were lots of adults with us and Aidan and Banks went with us as well. I drank lots and lots of water. The walk wasn’t that bad at all. Some of the boys from other troops got pretty tired, but all the guys from Troop 1 did just fine.
Did you know that tea grows on bushes? I don’t know where I thought it came from, but it looked like there were giant fields of the bushes in front of our house! We got to learn all about how tea is made, and then we got to drink some peach tea. It was good, but I think I like Bojangles’ tea a lot better.
One boy got hurt running into the wall inside the tea plantation while we were taking a tour. I’m not quite sure how he got hurt, because we were just walking… but he cried and didn’t have to hike home! Our lunch was fine. We had turkey and cheese sandwiches with cookies on the picnic tables at the tea plantation.
The scouts back at camp had pizza!!! I’ll give you one guess as to what kind of pizza it was… Oink! Oink! Oink! Pepperoni! That makes seven meals with pepperoni! Did you know that Troop 1 used to have three Jewish boys go to camp? Do you think Sarge understands that lots of Jewish people can’t eat pork? I don’t think I could eat peanut better seven times in one week… and it’s only Wednesday.
The walk back home didn’t take nearly as long as the walk to there. Maybe we were faster because we knew where we were going. Bradley had a street named after him! I bet he had a great-great-great-great grandfather who lived on that dirt road.
We had a little time off after we got home before we had to go to swimming. It felt good to cool off after all that work. The first-year scouts spent the rest of the afternoon practicing the Scout oath, the Scout law, lots of knots, and the outdoor code so that we could have our scoutmaster conference and board of review. Lots of us have already passed, but a few of us have to practice a little more. We’ve been helping each other, and the older scouts have been really good about helping us, too.
Parts of supper were really good. If you can’t figure out what we ate, you just aren’t paying much attention. It came from a creature that oinks! We had good barbecue, some left-over macaroni and cheese, cole slaw, and beans. I bet that the trash cans are overflowing with beans tonight!
The barbecue really was good, even if the sauce wasn’t the same as Earl Dukes’ in Orangeburg. At the end of the meal, all the counselors started clapping and then they came over to sing happy birthday to Chris Jungkind. He’s sixteen years old today.
We went to church after supper. Ho Non Wah’s chapel is amazing. It overlooks the marsh. L.T. lead the service and he finally told us what L.T. stands for – “Little Taylor.”
After supper, I played a little gaga ball and then came back to New Shirmer. I’ve had fun just hanging around the rest of the night and playing with other boys in camp. I’m going to bed a little early tonight, because I have to cook a meal with the Woodsmen tomorrow.
This place sure is beautiful. Thanks for telling me that I could do it. I’m learning a lot and making a lot of new friends with guys I didn’t know that well before.
Give everybody my love, and please give Grover a kiss for me even though I know you think that’s gross.
I love you,
Your son… the Tenderfoot Scout