Started off today with one of those magical early-morning prayer & bible study sessions, but had to be there for 7.15 [ouch!]. I turned up just after 7.10 & was amazed to find out I was supposed to be leading it – d’oh! Well it was in the leaders pack, which is great, but as I still didn’t have one [as I wasn’t there on the first day of camp, I was at the wedding!] I had no idea lol! So I had about 4 minutes to prepare something, so I did it on Micah, which had come from a talk at my placement church [St Mary’s, North Leigh]. It went ok, but I’m not sure it was up to the standard set by everyone else! At the meeting, we found out if we were going to go Scuba Diving, or to Monkeyworld – today it was the turn of the younger tents to go Scuba Diving & the older one to Monkeyworld. As per yesterday, I was working with Shani & the youngest boys & girls tent, but as an added bonus, we had AJ [whose real name was Adam & I’d forgotten that – been calling him AJ for years lol] & Maddie [aka Madeleine, Madders, Mad-Eye, etc.]. After the morning teaching session, we had to get our packed lunches & drink & load it into the minibus, then off to a place far, far, away [honestly I have no idea where!!] where we first had to have some luncheon, then head off on a photo-challenge-treasure-hunt-thing! This was quite cool & I think we did get most of the answers, but we were with the little ones, so things always took a little longer lol!!
Next came one of the highlights of the week [for me anyways lol] – Scuba Diving!! This was not far from the treasure hunt thing, & we went as a whole crew [apart from Shani, who didn’t want to!] so there were 10 of us in the water & one watching [i.e. Shani]. First we had some safety announcements, then were introduced to the kit & the leaders were asked to help the younger ones on with their stuff first, before getting their own kit sorted. The kit we were using I assume was for beginners [but don’t quote me on that lol!] with basically a pack on your back with shoulder, chest & waist straps to attach you to your pack, then there were 4 different attachments to the pack – one for your air apparatus [respirator], a spare air apparatus, a divemaster computer [how much air you have left, direction, depth, etc.] & a method to control your ascent/descent – this was a method of inflating or deflating your pack [it had an air lung inside it which was linked to the air supply I assume] so you could sink [presumably with natural gravity & the weight of your pack – it really was quite heavy]. Once everyone had got the packs on, we had to get on some swim-fins [although they were a bit unnecessary in the pool!] & a mask [so we could see underwater!]. Then we had a chance to play with the kit we had on – try breathing above water to get used to the respirator, then using the ascent/descent control, try sinking down. The pool was only about 20m long & was split into two depths – 1.5m in the shallow end & 3m in the deep end. We weren’t allowed to go deep [although other groups had been, as they were the only group using the pool] - there was another crew of more experienced divers at the deep end, so they didn’t want to have too many people in the same part of the pool! Because there were 10 of us [no there were actually 11 – Smellit was there to!!] it was quite crowded, & for the leaders, it was quite frustrating as 1.5m of pool is not really enough to do more than swim around a little bit – I felt that if we had the 3m part, we could have at least dropped away from the rest of the campers & had a bit more space – near the bottom of the pool!! After about 45 minutes [of which only about 15-20 was spent in the pool] we had to de-pack & shower & change [a shower – eeek that might make all the dirt & stuff go away & where’s the fun in that lol!!]. Once all the campers had showered & changed, the leaders disappeared to do the same thing.
We had Smellit [i.e. Dave Adams] with us on the journey back & we actually drove through some rain - so far this week, there had been no rain, only glorious sunshine!!! Also on the way home I had to look after Mad-Eye’s wooden heart necklace, which she had snapped the string which kept it around her neck. It was a very pretty heart, made out of King Wood [quite ironic as Mad-Eye’s surname is King] by her dad & she had to take it off her neck for Scuba Diving, & me, being me, said I have some string to fixify it lol!! So I had to look after it [& not snap it lol!!] till we got back & then I put some elastic string around it & gave it back – 1, 2, 3, awwwwww!!! When we got back, there was going to be quite a wait for the Monkeyworld crew to get back [the traffic was awful on the main roads back to the camp base], so Smellit & Me got a match going between the leaders & campers – to start off with, it was, Smellit, AJ & me, but as soon as people wanted to get involved it got a bit larger lol! Was a lot of fun, but it kind of defeated the object of having a shower after diving lol!! When everyone came back, it was time for Tent Time & then dinner [yaaay dinner!!]. During dinner, I noticed that one of my tent-crew was not looking particularly happy, so I checked to see if he wanted a chat after dinner, he did, so I told the man Wrighty that I would have to take some time after dinner & to excuse us from the washing up. I chatted to the camper about what was up, & it was a member of his family that he felt really close to, so that was not cool. I prayed with him & then he asked for some thinking space, so I gave it to him. I then caught up with Wrighty to explain what was up & for each of us to keep an eye on him.
The evening’s activity was a chilled-out movie – Happy Feet. However, I really didn’t see that much of it! It probably too me an hour to walk from the kitchen to the main meeting tent, as almost everyone I passed needed to talk to me! From Josephine & Sarah who needed jumpers as they were always too cold, to Lauren who needed to chat as a member of her in-laws who she’s know for ages had developed a cancer, & needed to talk to someone. It was good to feel needed, but my only problem was that if you’re always giving out support, sometimes you need to receive some support yourself – I really felt that tonight. However, as a bit of good news, my mother rang me to tell me that my Grandmother Jean [on her birthday no less] had decided to give me £120 to buy a camera!! I reckon that I might use the money towards getting a SatNav instead, but I will have to talk to Jean to confirm if she would be happy for me to do that.
Finally today, there was no PJ’s so it was chill time, then sleep time – a very busy & draining day!!
15 Aug 2007
Day 11/A very busy day!!
Day 11 - Tuesday: