With permission, we are sharing a poem written by one of my 1st North Berwick Beaver colony parents, inspired by her experience in supporting her Beaver son (and older Cub son) in doing the SES Longest Day SleepOut in June. It’s called ‘Sam’s Lockdown Adventure’.
It’s full of humour and emotion and a lovely, sincere account of a family’s lockdown Scouting experience and a great reflection of the amount of hard work parents did (and are still doing) to keep Scouting going
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
1st North Berwick Beavers
At 2 o’clock sharp a text pinged on mum’s phone,
“Scout camp in lockdown,” She read with a groan.
“We can’t come together but we can still have some fun,
Put your tent up at home and we’ll Zoom later on.”
“Can we camp out?” asked Sam with a smile on his face,
“Beaver camp’s off, but the garden’s the place!”
“I suppose so,” said Mum with a bit of a sigh,
As she peered at the clouds through a half-opened eye.
“I’ll go up to the attic and get the tent out,
But I’ll need your Dad’s help, can you give him a shout?
It’s 3 o’clock now, we’d best waste no time,
We should really set up while the sun does still shine.”
“I’ve found it,” said Mum, “But no pegs in the bag”
You kids never tidy, that’s why I’m a nag!
Have you any idea where you put them away?”
“I know!” said Sam, “They’re in the driveway.”
When the town clock struck 4, the gear was outside,
They’d decided to set up the tent by the slide.
But before they got started, Sam gave a shout:
“A Scout camp needs hotdogs, get the BBQ out!”
“Of course,” replied Mum as she pulled out the tent,
“But first we must sort out the day’s main event.”
“These poles are so tricky, I forget where they go,
Is it this hole, or that one, does you Dad know?”
As the time approached 5, the tent was set up,
Though Sam’s big demands just wouldn’t let up:
“We need marshmallows, hotdogs and burgers in buns!”
There’s not much mum wouldn’t do for her sons.
She pulled out the barbeque, and charcoal briquettes,
They would do this for Sam, so he’d have no regrets.
The charcoal got hot and the embers grew white,
The hotdogs were tasty, a real camp delight.
“Just one more thing, Mum, please make s’mores.
There’s no-one that makes them as good as yours!”
“Oh, go on then,” said mum, with an audible sigh,
“But it’s now nearly 6 – time really does fly!”
They had the sweet treats, then thought about beds,
They’d need somewhere cosy to rest weary heads.
Roll mats were gathered, and sleeping bags too,
But where were the torches? Only mum knew!
At the sight of the den, Dan wanted to join them,
“Nip up to the house, grab your stuff and come on then!”
So, by seven o clock another bed was found,
Though mum was never keen to sleep on the ground.
While the boys made it cosy in one of the pods,
Mum had a plan that would defy all the odds.
She would sleep on a mattress, one good and thick,
With a duvet on top, that might do the trick.
At near 8 o’clock the zoom call came through,
“Let’s sing some camp songs, with all the scout crew!”
His leader sang loud but it was in vain,
For the boys were just shouting, they thought it a game.
Stories were read and the boys settled down,
They could hear 9 strikes from the clock in the town.
“Night now, my boys, I hope you sleep well.
I’ll be right next door if you need me just yell.”
But at ten the zip on mum’s pod was unfurled,
And the boys crept in where she lay tightly curled,
“What’s going on here?” They cried in disgust,
“How have you got a bed while we lie in dust?”
So, by eleven the beds were all swapped,
And onto the mattress the 2 boys just flopped.
But down on the roll mat beside them mum groaned,
“Why am I doing this, I should have known!”
At 12 the cat from next door gave a howl,
As all round their tent he started to prowl.
“I don’t like it” muttered Dan, I want to go in,
But Sam started snoring despite all the din.
And then there were two left out to camp,
With one sleeping soundly and one who had cramp.
As the night closed around them, from the window above,
Some music played loudly, but Sam didn’t move.
The clock down town pealed out 1, 2, 3 and 4,
Young Sam didn’t stir, he continued to snore,
But squashed up beside him his mum couldn’t sleep,
Despite breathing deeply and counting out sheep.
As dawn broke at five, the birds chirped their song,
Mum knew that she hadn’t slept for too long.
She wiped bleary eyes and tried to lie still.
Ignoring the drizzly rain and the chill.
Finally, Sam blinked his eyes open and smiled,
“I did it! I slept through the night!” beamed the child.
“I’m so proud,” said his mum, “I love you a ton,
“You know I’d do anything for you my son.”