Saturday, 25 July 2009

Pulau Ubin Cycling Expedition

We were off to Pulau Ubin for a cycling expedition. Little did we know, we had a test coming our way. Upon arriving on the island, we rented some old bikes at about $4 each and cycled to Noordin Beach where our skills were put to the test.We were given 3 matches each and had to set up a fire using natural fuel. The fire had to be maintained for 10 mins per patrol member before we were allowed to cook on it. If we ran out of matches (Swift Patrol did), they would have to construct a shelter. A member of the patrol had to be in it while the Ventures poured a bottle of seawater over it. Once that was passed, Swift was given only another 3 matches!At about 1530 hrs, we went through a sensory trail, in an attempt to go fishing at a jetty. Unfortunately it is now a private jetty and is only for residents and visitors with instructor only. We then cycled to Mammam Beach where we finally got to reveal our fishing gear.However, after much frustration, losing many hooks and even a handline, only I managed to catch a puffer fish. I attribute it to my patience and a calm mind. The other Scouts were all green with envy, eager to catch a fish but to no avail.By 1700hrs, it was time to go and we headed back to the main jetty, took a group photo and called it a day. It was a great but a tiring day together!More photos on Facebook.

Friday, 24 July 2009

Helping To Promote "UP" At SPH

Soaring Eagles was asked to help in distributing some publicity materials to journalists at the Singapore Press Holdings as part of the marketing for the upcoming Disney/Pixar's movie "UP". Serpent and I left immediately after dismissal from school and I had to miss my lunch!

First, we met the marketing manager at the Disney Motion Pictures, Singapore office to collect books. In return for my "work", I received a gift bag for helping! There were lots of movie premiums in it, which included a compass, para-googles, water bottle, cap and even an "UP" backpack!

I quickly put on the "UP" scarf and we were ready to roll. It was quite a thrilling experience as I had to imitate a character from the movie, Russell. I had to recite a script in a tone as similar to Russell's as possible and it was not an easy task. I was very nervous when I had to actually recite the phrase to the four journalists from Lian He Wan Bao, The Straits Times, The New Paper and i-Weekly. It's a whole different feeling from when I was rehearsing in front of the mirror. I did it in all in one take for each journalist. They were impressed. cFor the last journalist, I was even invited to autograph the book! I fet like a movie star!After all the great moments and experiences, Serpent treated me to lunch. Finally, YUM!

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Soon

We haven't met as a Cub Scout Pack since 5 June 2009 due to the heightened precautions against H1N1 and a good 7 weeks have past. Many are itching to have CCA meetings and have been asking Akela and myself every week, when we would meet again. Soon.The Scouts and Ventures are more fortunate. Being an open group, we were able to meet every Saturday and have been having a fruitful time camping, cooking, fishing, cycling. Three of our Secondary 1s have also attained their Standard First Aid Certification.

The good news is that we would be resuming CCA in Week 5 on 28 July 2009 with investiture of our P3 Cubs (finally!) and the new Sixers Council! To end off the week with a bang, we will be having a Special Screening of Disney Pixar's UP at Cathay Causeway Point on Friday 31 July 2009 at 1900 hrs (entry by tickets only). This special screening will commemorate 12 years of fun and adventure with many more years to come!

Special Guests to expect include:
our new Vice Principal, Mrs Caroline Woo
Assistant Chief Commissioner (Programme), Dr Jeffrey Ho
Assistant Chief Commissioner (North West), Mr Steven Ang
Deputy National Programme Commissioner, Mr Alex Choo
special friends, volunteer campstaff and supporters who have lent a hand over the years and our supportive family members.

There's gonna be free popcorn and balloons! Its gonna be one great celebration - thanks to Disney Motion Pictures (Singapore) and Cathay Cineplexes for their generosity.

In the meantime, on the topic of balloons, here's a little video to set us all in the mood to thank God for the Scouting Life we have. For the years we shared. For the times we toiled. For the laughter. For every small thing that makes us, us.
Until we meet again, UP there.

Monday, 6 July 2009

Camp Kawanee 1 - Day 4

We woke up to the best meal in camp! A full continental breakfast complete with cereal and scrambled eggs with sausages. Area cleaning was next with POWER-PACKED cleaning actions! The dust was like floating the in air forming a thin layer of mist in the dormitory, this made us sneeze, a lot.Once we were done, the inevitable happened. We gathered at the Multi-Purpose Hall and we had to bid each other goodbye. It was too difficult, so we took turns to share our most memorable experiences in the camp. I shared that "The most memorable experience in this camp was of the friends we made and the fun times we had together." these will form the best of my memories which I will hold dear to my heart. This was echoed by many who also spoke about friendship and 'having fun together'. Captain Fruit was also one of the common threads that ran through the sharings.Vern Casey, the Scout Branch Commissioner of Western Australia rounded up by talking about the memories in being all wet in the rain and covered in fruit, damper dough on our faces and clothes, lighting a fire and refusing to give up... until the fire baked our damper. These were all actions of us, refusing to back down as we lit the fire of friendship in our hearts.We are lucky to be Scouts because this is where we gained our worldwide brotherhood. We celebrated the memory of the camp by committing our images to be recorded as digital photos.Kranji War Memorial was the final place we visited before we all went our separate ways. With due respect we had our headgear on as a gesture of respect to the dead. Fiery Serpent gave an introduction of the place, speaking about the heroes who defended Singapore and the surrounding lands against the invading Japanese forces during WWII. The memorial was were 4,458 servicemen and women were buried, although over 850 of the remains are unidentified. The memorial wall also bore the names of 24,000 men and women who were never found after the war.

The place was sacred and benevolent. The camp ended and we bid farewell to the the Australian Scouts. We gave our warmest hugs too. See ya Brothers & Sisters!5 of us went to Lau Pa Sat with Fiery Serpent in the evening to have dinner with our Aussie mates... we had so much fun getting them to try the different foods we had in Singapore. Surprisingly many of them loved the taste of BBQ Stingray but absolutely detested the taste of durian. Congratulations, Chris, on winning the best look of disgust! And again, the parting was difficult with long tight hugs and frantic waves of goodbye.More photos on Facebook.
Video on YouTube:

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Camp Kawanee 1 - Day 3

The day began at 0745 hrs for breakfast and shortly afterwards, we went to Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve Park. This 130-ha area was officially gazetted as a nature reserve in 2002 and renamed as Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve to better reflect its status. Here, we witnessed the magnificence and diversity of plants.We headed back to camp and had lunch as we prepared for our segment of the in-camp activities. We planned for 5-base activities but patrols would only have to rotate round to 4 of them. The activity would then culminate with Captain Fruit. At each of the 4 bases, patrols would learn a little about Singapore and its amalgam of cultures.We played traditional games of the Chinese (老鹰捉小鸡 - which is literally translated as Eagle Catching Little Chicks), the Malay (Chapteh) and the Indians (Kabaddi). The last station was dedicated to the pride of Singapore hosting the first ever Youth Olympic Games and through Captain Fruit we taught our friends the food culture of Singapore.
Even though we had screwed up the rotation process, it was certain that everyone enjoyed playing Captain Fruit in the rain. Common reason? It was wet and yucky... :)After a short break to change our clothes, our Aussies mates taught us how to make Aboriginal Paintings. It was very easy as we only had to follow the picture to an outline on another piece. After which each patrol took turns to make Damper, a traditional Australian bread made with flour, water, salt and sugar. We then made a fire (that was sheltered from the rain) in the rain to bake our Damper.
We were wet again, but our spirits were not dampened. We had a special barbecue dinner (Singapore style - the Aussie Barbie was burgers or steak cooked on a hot plate!) specially prepared by the leaders. We also celebrated Bart's birthday so there was plenty of cake to go around.Needless to say, we had a short debrief, celebrated Possum's (belated) birthday as well and went to shower and sleep.

More photos and Captain Fruit action on Facebook.

Saturday, 4 July 2009

Camp Kawanee 1 - Day 2

We join in the camp on Day 2, reporting at Jurong Point bright and early today. Upon arrival at Sarimbun and upon completion of the regular temperature taking exercise, we had breakfast with the mates from Western Australia, Perth.8 Scouts, 3 Venturers and 2 Commissioners are here in Singapore in our third interaction with the Scouts WA. This was followed by a Sarimbun Campsite walk-about, a Patrol Break-Out Session which included a short preparation for our tripartite Campfire in the evening. We then headed for lunch.After lunch, we had a session conducted by the 23 Eagles Scout Group. They started with some icebreakers of "Blow, Wind, Blow" and "Bang, Bang!" before proceeding with the main base activities. The bases were Map Reading, where we learnt the basic components that make up a map; Human Knot, where we form a circle and grab the hands of another person, then try to untangle ourselves without letting go of the hand-to-hand links; and lastly, Decoding Messages station, where we had to break codes using a cipher key, as fast as possible.Exhausted from all the fun activities we had, we went to have our dinner. Right after dinner, all of us headed to the campfire pit and got ourselves settled down. While waiting for the campfire to commence, the Air Scouts from Thailand arrived so naturally as Scouts, we went to say hello and exchanged a few gifts.
The campfire was declared open by GoH Fiery Serpent (National Cub Scout Commissioner) and Sheridan Bunny (Dy Chief Commissioner of Western Australia). It was literally a melting pot of cultures when the various troops present took turns to lead songs. I would readily admit that we all had a lot of fun, and learnt new songs like the Fishy Wishy Dance from the Aussies, and The Sea - Holiday Medley from the Thai Scouts. We were told later that Mr Yuk had invented the song on the spot when asked to lead a segment of the campfire when visiting a group.The campfire was special as three countries were gathered together in one night, singing and laughing despite our different backgrounds. Scouting is indeed a Worldwide Brotherhood. After the closing of the campfire, everyone headed to the canteen to grab some refreshments and talked to each other and took pictures.Before long, though, we had to say goodbye to our Thai friends. We had a short briefing for our segment of the in-camp activities the next day before we showered and retired in our dormitories for a much needed rest.

More photos on Facebook.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Camp Kawanee 1

The "Eagles Scout Connection" namely Toa Payoh Eagles Scout Group, 23 Eagles Scout Group (Clementi) and Soaring Eagles Scout Group are proud to have the honour of hosting the inaugural WA Scouts visit to Singapore from 3-10 July 2009 and Camp Kawanee (which literally means Friendship in the Malay language) is a joint camping programme between Scouts from Singapore and Western Australia.Through joint activities and interaction we hope to foster brotherhood friendship and understanding of both countries cultural differences. Through Camp Kawanee, Scouts will be given the opportunity to learn, acquire new scout skills through group learning and living.

SE will be organising the in-camp activities on Sunday afternoon. Its going to be great!