Normally Summer Camp would be quite a busy time for the Rover Crew as many of its members would be busy with their respective sections. As a result the Crew does not often have an activity of its own – let alone an overnight one. Having said that, the recent inclusion of a number of new members has meant that there would be more Rovers able to participate in a given activity and therefore we duly obliged by organising an overnight hike.
Given that camp was being held at Ghajn Tuffieha, it was only natural that the starting point would be at the camp site. Therefore, on Friday 12th September at precisely 9pm (and only about an hour and a half or so after we were mean to meet and depart), Nina and Pierre Sant, Timmy Zammit, Edward Apap Bologna, Simon Gauci, David Pace, Liam Curmi de Grey and Meli ‘Matthew’ Zammit departed from the campsite.
Being a proper scouting activity we made it a point to head away from traffic and cars (but not the mo-biles and the internet connections) to the nearby ‘woodland ‘ that is Mizieb. Therefore we duly headed towards Manikata and quickly went cross-country off the beaten track. Of course being a particularly hot and stick night water breaks under the trees were a must.
After just one mapping ‘dispute’ we made it out of the woodland mostly intact and soon came to Xemxija. The dilemma there was whether we should head towards Selmun or opt for a night by the sea. The calm sea and pleasant surroundings (and having nothing to do with the big hill between Mistra and Selmun) we bravely opted to find a spot by the sea.
After another water break and considerable debate about where the bivouac should go we were joined by Emmanuel Lewis (whose car was identified by the not un-substantial lighting of the ‘Grundig’) who imme-diately joined the debate. We eventually decided and therefore split into two teams. One team set out to get a fire going to cook an overdose of burgers and sausages and another team worked on the bivouac.
Just as we got into our stride Timmy’s girlfriend joined us and brought with her a cake to celebrate Timmy’s birthday. Suddenly the fire seemed a bit extra – especially since Pierre, Nina, Liam and Lewis were not going to eat and sleep there. Nonetheless, the remaining Rovers persevered with their dinner preparations and talking by the fire.
Interestingly enough the latter proved to provide the highlight of the activity because just after we finally got to bed, we were joined by two policemen because they got a report of a fire going under trees and what not. Needless to say all precautions were heeded to and in fact by the time they got there, there was no fire to speak of.
The hot and somewhat draining walk ensured that we were soon back to sleep. But before long the hot Maltese Summer sun shone its glare to us and brought our sleep to an end. Therefore, the remaining 5 rovers were soon up and packed and ready to go. The plan was pretty much to retrace our steps from the previous night. But the startling thing was that in the dark we did not realise we had gone over ups and downs.
Nonetheless we soon made it back to the campsite. But this was far from the end of our hard long say... The Rover Crew is all about Service. However talk is cheap... and to put our ethos into practice, despite many blisters and a night’s sleep on the ground in a field, the Rovers were soon helping out in the disman-tiling of the campsite and loading of the truck. This therefore brought the Crew’s event and the Group’s camp to an end.