Monday, 30 November 2009

Fishing @ HOTboys Kelong

We arrived punctually with our fishing equipment at 0600 hrs with special guests Miss Tan and Miss Lee and were all excited as we left Singapore! We were can't wait to fish! We cleared customs quickly and within the hour, we were at the rest stop somewhere in Malaysia where we had breakfast. Thankfully, there was also a tackle shop and we got some last minute equipment.We got to the jetty at about 1100 hrs. Sleepy eyed and half awake, we bought some snacks, snapped a few group photos and were on the boat to HOTboys Kelong. The sea was rough but that made the boat ride very fun as we charged against the big waves that hit the boat head-on! The result is a very wet group of Scouts arriving at the kelong. It was surely one of the things that made the trip very memorable.We were one of the last groups to arrive at the kelong which was running at maximum capacity. We started to prepare our fishing equipment immediately and before long, we were already fishing! We had a great time jigging for small fishes until the bell rung, signaling that lunch was ready. We wasted no time, eating quickly and getting back to fishing. Some of us had our lines tangled with other people's lines. They had left their gear unattended for hours and we were not happy about it!Serpent, Seal, Monkey and I were all happily catching small fish, sometimes two at a time, until about 1700 hrs when someone broke the monotony by catching 2 large squids. I was so excited, I ran to grab my squid jigging equipment and started to jig! I was particularly excited as I have not caught a squid before! People around me started to bring up squids one by one, but I caught nothing. However, I was undeterred and I sat patiently waiting for my squid. Several fishermen gave me tips on how to catch squids. He spotted a few squids and pointed them out to me, but that caused such a commotion that others came and they started caught most of them. I missed a few hookups as I was a little too impatient.Soon the bell rang again, but Possum and I had no mood to eat dinner. We took the opportunity while everyone was having dinner to catch squids. I took Miss Tan's advice and stayed at my spot, moving my rod in slow motion. Still nothing. When people came back after their dinner, they continued catching squids - even OCTOPUSES!

I felt discouraged but my frustration kept me going. I tried hard to focus and at about 2100 hrs I felt something heavy at the end of my fishing line. I told myself that I must not lose the tension, otherwise I would lose the squid! I glanced around at other peoples fishing rods to make sure I did not tangle my line with theirs! Finally a huge squid emerged from the sea!Miss Lee and Miss Tan were so excited. They were snapping pictures and everyone around me were also very excited and happy for me as I hauled it onto the kelong floor. Tada! My first squid! My perseverance has finally paid off! I was so happy and I knew then, I could sleep well that night!

It was raining the next morning but we continued fishing, stopping only for breakfast and lunch. We finally had to leave the kelong at about 1500 hrs. It has been an awesome and fruitful experience that we (well at least I) will never forget! Special thanks to Nightingale a.k.a. "Bait Boy" for patiently preparing bait for us. Without you we wouldn't have caught any fish!More photos on Serpent's Facebook and on Ms Lee's Facebook.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Combined Cubs Camp 2009 - Transformers, A New Chapter!

Camp Staff moved into Woodlands Ring Primary School from 1400 hrs on Thursday, Day 0 of the 2nd Annual CCC. After hours of tireless work we took our dinner break at Admiralty Food Court. It was a fast one and we came back about 45 minutes later and had our Staff briefing for the activities of the next day. Lights out.

Day 1 was finally here and we woke up bright and early to set up the 2-1-flagpole in 30 minutes which was quite a record for 5 members! Finished a whole load of other stuff before the Cubs started arriving in dribs and drabs. We jumped into our full uniforms and were ready to welcome all of them.Camp Chief, Astute Possum and Assistant Camp Chief, Eminent Giraffe appeared in an Optimus Prime Helmet and briefed the Campers on the theme of the camp and what to expect, as well as our expectation of the campers. We were sure it was going to be a fun camp then. Wet weather ice breakers kicked in as it started raining and the rain stopped in time for our flag break, camp development and the pitching of tents followed by dinner.After dinner, volunteers from our partners Han's Art came in and ran the art session where the Cubs Constructed their Transformer Robot costumes using masks and recycled boxes. The night ended after a quick shower with supper and the screening of the movie: Transformers - Revenge Of The Fallen. The Cubs really enjoyed the movie despite having watched it before. The fun-filled day concluded with a short reflection.

We woke up for the long and tiring Day 2 ahead of the Cubs and washed up quickly. Had flag break followed by Morning PT. Breakfast followed before we all set off excitedly to Jurong Bird Park where the Cubs excitedly completed Dr Squawk's Quest! It was exhilarating yet very tiring! I must be getting too old as it tired me out the first two hours. Lunch and Tea were served at the park where we also caught the two shows back to back. I learnt that contrary to popular belief, bird brain doesn't mean stupid. Birds are intelligent if trained and loved.Upon arrival back at base camp, the Cubs spent a couple of hours finalising their gangshow before dinner and CAMPFIRE! Although GSL had to make the decision to have the campfire partially indoors due to the lightning risk (CAT1), this must have been the most exciting campfire we've ever conducted! The fire was unexpectedly huge too! It burned to a height of 2 stories!For the first time ever, the Camp Staff put together a funny dance to entertain the Cubs too! It was also the first time GSL actually spoke to close the campfire. He did so by gathering the Cubs close around the fire... it was a very special campfire. Of course all good things must come to an end, and lights must go out.Day 3 arrived and in keeping with tradition, after PT was McDonald's breakfast! A hot favourite! This was quickly followed by War Games and Wet Telematch, area cleaning and prize giving. Overall, we had a fantastic camp because we have a new batch of camp staff who were energetic and hardworking! They really motivated us the old-timers and renewed our own commitment to doing a great camp.GSL was undoubtedly very impressed. He had only good things to say, singing the praises of the camp staff. GG everyone! As we prepared to leave, the next CCC'10 Camp Chief and his assistant were chosen, and the planning begins.

More photos on Facebook (Possum), Facebook (Serpent) and Facebook (Winnie).

Monday, 16 November 2009

Sunday, 8 November 2009

S.H.A.P.E. Up! Camp 2009

Soaring Eagles has been running SHAPE Up! for the fourth year to train the graduating Cubs to literally SHAPE Up! as they continue on the road of their own life in the present-day society. It also helps them build the basic bonds between each other and their senior Scouts, helping them to understand each other and work better as a team.The Cubs were taught that each person (hence the team they form) is shaped by their, Spiritual gifts, Heart, and Personality. All of them had to share what they had written down with everyone else. During the Personality session, we took the Enneagram test on the internet to find out our personality types. It was agreed that the test was extremely accurate after reading their own descriptions of their personality type.

We had pizza for dinner and each participant was paired up with a scout buddy to know each other better. After which we watched a Japanese movie titled '252 Signal of Life'. We all enjoyed the movie and having analyzed the movie, we identified the personalities and qualities of each character. It was obvious as the reflection session on the movie afterwards was smooth as the discussion and reflection on the movie was in depth and meaningful.

We woke up at 0900 hrs and did our PT straight away. We played a game of Silent Basketball. The gameplay is the same as normal basketball, only that we couldn't call out anyone's name. Violators are removed from the game. After breakfast, we continued with our sessions on Abilities, and Experience. We did our usual round of sharing what was written down and everyone got to know each other a bit more and felt closer as a family when bad experiences were shared.
The camp officially came to an end after the Cubs were promoted from Cubs to Scouts in the moving up ceremony. Izzuan, a new Scout, was also invested thereafter.

To end it off, we celebrated our achievements for the year. GSL congratulated all who would be receiving Proficiency Badges. He said that in SE, we believe in getting each Scout fully qualified (and certified by the relevant governing bodies, where possible) before we award them their badges. The badges we about to receive were a result of attending rigourous courses and taking stringent tests. As such, we were told to wear them proudly.

All Scouts were awarded the Camper, Guide, Rock Climber, Cyclist, Athlete, and Collector Proficiency Badges. Affable Nightingale, Eminent Giraffe and Gregarious Monkey received an additional Ambulance Proficiency for having completed the Standard First Aid Course by Singapore Red Cross, while Astute Possum received an additional Photographer Proficiency Badge Course for having attended the DSLR Photography Course by Willy Foo.

More photos on Facebook.

Friday, 6 November 2009

District Orenting Competition

The Yishun District Orienteering Competition was reorganized on 5 November 2009 due to unforeseen circumstances at the initial Competition on 31 October 2009. The Start Point at the second competition was Ang Mo Kio MRT Station at 1330 hrs.
After the distribution of innocence(s) and instructions, our team's (SE-Swift) first MGR led us to Ang Mo Kio Swimming Complex, where Hummingbird is to do a swimming task given by the checkpoint marshal. After swimming two breadths in two different strokes, he pace around the pool to estimate its perimeter.

The second MGR was supposed to lead us to 282, Bishan Street 22 but we walked to Bishan Community Center which was our final checkpoint. Consequently we had to walk all the way back to 282, between Catholic High School and the Salvation Army. At that checkpoint we were given a picture of a door and our job is to locate that door and take a photo of it. Our clue was simply: #??-33.It started as a random search, but we soon developed a strategy to locate the exact block and before long, located the door. Our 3rd MGR led us back to Ang Mo Kio Community Center. Our tasks were to draw the floor plan of the 3rd level and shoot hoops within a given time limit given. Upon completing the tasks, we were given our final MGR which, as we know would lead us to Bishan Community Center, however we received a phone call en route telling us that the hike was over and to report to Singapore Scouts HQ for debrief.It was a tiring day, but we had the unique opportunity of bonding with the Cubs preparing for moving up. Today, SHAPE Up!More photos on Facebook.

Monday, 2 November 2009

New Chief Commissioner!

Soaring Eagles Scout Group would like to congratulate Mr Tan Cheng Kiong who was appointed as the new Chief Commissioner of the Singapore Scout Association with effect from 1 November 2009.

Mr Tan takes over from Mr Nicholas Tang who had served two full terms of 8 years, ending on 31 October 2009.