Sunday, August 5, 2007

Friends from many countries; carding BP's grandson

Time is flying by here at the Jambo! Mark and |I just finished our double whammy of 11 pm to 8 am shift  followed 7 hours later by the 3 pm to 12 midnight shift. After a good night's sleep we have a short "spare" day of several hours followed tomorrow by our day off.
Have made friends with folks from many countries. I have had rotating partners from Brazil, Mexico, Ireland and Scotland. Last night I was paired with Owen Smith from Scotland. It was fascinating talking with him about politics, the Royal Family, etc. As a Cub Scout, he attended the last World Jamboree hosted by the UK, the 1957 World Scout Jamboree which celebrated 50 years of Scouting. He wears his traditional Scottish kilt as his uniform regardless of the weather. Last night we had two 2 hour stints as security guards checking nametags to make sure that everyone is an official Jamboree participant and keeping anyone under 18 out of the adult camping area. As fate would have it, we carded Mr. and Mrs. Mark Baden Powell. He is the younger grandson of Scouting's founder, BP. Naturally, I made sure to get a photo with Mark BP. His older brother, the Lord Robert Baden Powell, spoke at the Sunrise Ceremony on 8/1. Mark moved to Australia decades ago and is camping with that country's contingent in the adult area.
While I look forward to returning to the USA in a few days, I must confess that I will miss hearing folks speaking multiple languages (other than English and Spanish ) simultaneously.
My knowledge of the world has definitely broadened these few weeks. Mike and I watched a group doing prayers in the Muslim area. We also sampled foods from multiple countries in the international foods tent. Mike especially liked the cod liver oil pills from Iceland! I have enjoyed catching Scouts from different countries do their talent demonstrations. I watched a groups of oriental Scouts to a marvelous drum routine only to discover that they were all from Brazil rather than the far east. My Mexican partner explained to me that Brazil has a large oriental population. That same day, I watched Scouts from the Netherlands and Belgium do their presentations. They frequently have bands from different countries playing around the Jamboree.
Last night a groups of three young ladies from India came to our check point for the adult area. We had to stop two of them from entering the adult area because they were under 18. They sat while their adult friend went to her tent to retrieve something. I chatted with them briefly. They are in the same subcamp as Troop 220, the Jamboree troop in which Mike's son Michael and my son John are members. I asked what foods they cooked for the international food festival. They explained the exotic Indian dishes that their camp prepared. I explained that our Scouts handed out VA peanuts. I asked whether they visited the peanut site. They replied that they did not as they only visited camps to which they had been specifically invited. Just goes to show you how formal some cultures are about things.
Last night, we had to be stewards at the Elements activity area. At 10 pm, 10 lucky Scouts had the opportunity to speak with the crew of the international space station via a direct hookup. A large number Scouts and adults watched this exciting opportunity.
Good day, mate!
Chip Delano

See what you're getting into…before you go there See it!