The local Boy Scout Troop left for Summer camp this morning. Mrs F and I saw the two boys off and then started our week of "empty nesting". We started our day shed shopping and then just relaxed by the pool by ourselves for the first in like .... ever.
This is also the first time since Oldest Son joined scouts that I haven't gone with the Troop as an adult leader. My vacation schedule this year prevented me from joining them and so I sent my two off in the capable hands of the other adult leaders.
Oldest Son is Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) this year so he has many responsibilites and will be very busy. I am very proud of him of course and I wish that I were going this year just to watch him in action. SPL leads the troop morning and evening at colors and I know he'll do great. Youngest son is a reluctant patrol leader. He has been talking about quitting scouts and we told him that he committed through summer camp so this may be his last event. Oldest son is working on Eagle and may not be going to Summer camp next if he can get it all done in the 12 months. I hope that youngest sticks with it.
At first my participation in summer camp was hesitant. I did a half a week during one of the toughest summer camps ever. The troop was in turmoil after the resignation of key leaders and had almost doubled in size. We had 40 boys under age 12, five of which at any given moment wanted their mommies and Xbox and did not want to do camp. Rough year.
But I had a good time hanging out, playing pinochle and I came back the following year for a full year.
Boy Scout summer camp is a magical place really. They lock out the outside world and create a world of corny skits, campfires and songs at dinner time. It is a land that time has forgotten - for now.
Our boy scount council last held its own summer camp in 1984 and that means that every year we have to find a new camp to go to. Goospond Scout Reservation is one of our favorites and that is where the troop is headed this year. Goospond is one of those oldtime scout camps that has been there forever and remarkable for its program.
Our troop loves going there so I hope the boys have a good time.