An Pobal: An Pobal is an idea thought up by the Southeastern Province of Scouting Ireland’s Venture Youth Reps in February 2011 at the annual Youth Forum. It currently has two set locations: Srahan and Mellary. The two of them being major national campsites in the Southeastern Province. It’s for all southeastern ventures but anybody can come really! Click more to see the log from Eoin Falconer from De La Salle Ventures
By Eoin Falconer, De La Salle Venture Scout
Weather: Rain, Muck, Yes boy!
We left from Mayor’s Walk at approx. 6:30 pm on the 14th of October 2011. The weather was diabolical and continued the whole weekend. Neilers had asked me to organise the bus, so I did so by filling out the form and then transferring the responsibility onto him. Very good idea I must say as I filled out the form wrong. The bus was some craic! We managed to time it perfectly so that we ended ’99 bottles of beer’ exactly as we pulled up to Srahan. Dean Purcell constantly enlightening us with some of the sickest jokes I have ever heard… anyone who knows Dean will agree.
So we got off the bus, ears ringing, we unpacked our bags. Due to me helping with organising the event I got to go into the warm comfy building and sit on my laptop.. BORING!.. while the lads pitched our tent in the rain..LOL. After everyone had checked in, Denise, Kalen and I (the organising youth reps) gave a brief on what the rules and regulations of the weekend were going to be. It went pretty smoothly and I could even here the chant of my new nickname in the back of the crowd “ Shmuel, Shmuel.” I had recently gotten my hair…. My scalp shaved. So then after that we retreated to our tents for a good night’s sleep, except we had about 20 other ventures in our tent and sleeping wasn’t an option! But eventually under the intense warmth of Bill Power’s bowel problems we went asleep..kinda.
So Saturday I had to get up at 7 to go shopping with Denise in the ‘town’ centre. It was good and I got a breakfast roll, the lads however suffered with a bag of crisps and a can of coke.. true ventures, I felt a duty to down a can of coke when I came back. Soon enough we started to name out the groups for the activities, we had previously organised two bouncy castles. The bases consisted of MPSE (Most Primitive Scouting Experience (it’s epic)), the bouncy castles (slide and obstacle course), Team building (the Arklow leaders did that), Grow talk (a talk about suicide and life) and last but not least… Martial arts. They all went fairly smoothly and as we predicted and everyone was having a good time. Then lunchtime came and so did my worst idea yet.. I call it ‘covering Bill Power in washing up liquid and pushing him down a (expensive) bouncy slide..plan’.We all had a great laugh on that slide and I’d love to see it on future events! The obstacle course was also up and it was taken very seriously about who was the person on top of the slide. Unfortunately after a short lived time on top I was pushed off the slide, but to the horror of most of the unfortunate onlookers my pants came down, I had evidently ‘jocked’ myself. Great.
After that horrific episode we decided to start the bases again, ventures being ventures we just kinda did what we wanted going from base to base. After the bases it was time for some food. Neilers or as we call him the DON (David O’Neill) began to cook us some lovely burgers, Eoin Kelly kind of helped, but really just tried to light things on fire. We all got food eventually and even though the weather wasn’t particularly brilliant it was still a great laugh.
Then came the disco (unce unce), the boys dressed in their finest apparel, muddy gaiters and creased shirts. Whilst the girls actually made an effort to dress up according to the theme of survival and dressed up as Bear Grylls etc. Now I don’t know much about DJs but I located from Colm Mullally (DJ rave monster 2kai11) that the DJ was absolutely useless. So, after all the effort of setting up the area for the disco.. it was a fail, but look I didn’t care and we still all had a good laugh, even though that DJ cost €50.
Then yet again another late venture night, I love late venture nights. The tent was absolutely packed and we had some good songs from some of the vocally gifted people in the tent including our very own Kayleigh McGavock. We all had a great laugh and we chatted away for the majority of the night, people talking about the Jamboree and sharing experiences. Cathal Ryan had decided to begin singing ‘Tenacious D’ songs and everyone found this very amusing. Yet again though, as always, the night came to a close and we all said goodbye to our friends as we got some good shut-eye!
I woke up to a fresh can of coke sitting in my hand thanks to Bill Power, also known as the ‘guy who will eat anything for money…anything’. It was a good morning and we kind of lazed around in the tent for a while, then I had to get up and start to help take everything down. Due to the washing up liquid used on the bouncy castle we had a lot of suds form on it, but the bouncy castle man said it was ok so PHEW! So we had decided to leave fairly early, around 10 o’clock, this was to avoid having to tidy up Srahan as it was a muddy mess. We all slept on the bus and had a great laugh. This was Dean Purcell’s last camp as a venture and we were all very sad to see him leave, he was ‘some man boi’ and we’ll miss him.
The weekend was run by Denise Delaney, Eoin Falconer and Kalen McNamara and we were helped a lot by David Clerkin. We thought the weekend was a great success and we had troops from all over come with an attendance of approx. 70 ventures. It was a great success and the next ‘An Pobal’ will be taking place in Mellary in the spring of 2012. I will hopefully be running that event and I look forward to it.
Yours in Scouting,