Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Girl Scout Orienteering Event in Umstead

A few weeks ago Artem, Tanya and I volunteered to organize an orienteering event for Girl Scouts on May 4. As the date approached Artem designed a yellow course and coordinated all the logistics. There were really no work for me and Tanya until the actual event day.

On May 4th, we left the home early, picked up the maps from Joseph's porch and met Artem at the Girl Scout's camp parking lot in the North Umstead. Splitted the controls between three of us and set them quickly. Then Artem teached the class. It was hard. Imagine 19 nine years old girls and 4 parents, girls loosing attention all the time and parents trying to keep the discipline and at the same time listen to Artem. The hardest part was alignment of the map and compass - I don't think many students got it... At least not in the group I went with after the class.

Anyway, the class was over and off we went. I decided to go with the group #4, as a lady who chaperoned this group was really struggling with the concepts. She was visibly relieved when I told her that I'll stick with them :-)

Much to my surprise the girls got the idea pretty quick, but it was also clear that they enjoyed rocks and streams more than controls :-) Also half of the girls were always running ahead, while another half lagging behind along with the lady. Speaking about different temperaments!

After control #5 where we had to cross a creek the group started to fell apart. Some of the girls as well as the chaperon lady got tired, while others were trying to push ahead. The only uniting factor were occasional dogs on the trails. Every dog we met was thoroughly petted by the whole group. Girls, what can I say!

But, apparently, there were not enough dogs on the course... By the time we reached control #6, the tired part of the group became very tired and wanted to go back to the camp. It was a pity, as other girls wouldn't mind to finish the course. Fortunately, we also caught up with the group #3 and were able to re-group: girls who wanted to proceed went with that group and I walked the tired ones up to the hill and to the camp.

Artem and Tanya were already there and 45 minutes later everybody has finished. It looks like they liked the activity. And a tortoise they found on the course made the day!

Who knows, it might be the same one I saw sitting on top of the ribbon a month ago during the April event.

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