1st Bergvliet's raft during constructionThe big question is .... can 1st Bergvliet pull off a Durbanville triumph of three in a row in 2006?  It would be an incredible feat.   Two in a row for any Troop is a feat in itself.  For those of you who watched the Bergvliet machine in action, you would have seen very few Scouters involved, in either their raft building or amongst the competition judges.   It was a case of trust, and the Scouts pulled through.  In fact, the Troop Scouters were too busy taking care of some of the logistics, such as the parade sound system, the multi-media display in the hall, the kitchen cash handling system and assisting the water safety crew with the launching and retrieval of rafts and any other unallocated job that came their way.

1st Bergvliet, as well as a number of other Troops which were obvious, put in an incredible amount of planning into the weekend.  It's not just the raft that gets seen to, but the numerous other facets to the competition, such as planning the correct STA equipment, the food menus, ensuring that the team eats and lives well during the 24 hours on the water.  When chatting to their team members it was obvious that they were in high spirits long before the rafts were launched.  It's that positive vibe amongst team members that ensures a team does well.   Congratulations, it was a job well done.

I would like to quote the words of Major Kinuthia Murugu, the African Regional Commissioner for the World Scout Organisation, as he addressed us at the closing of Kon-Tiki 2004.

"To all those that did their best.  Very well done. The thing in Scouting is that nobody knows that you did your best, except yourselves.  Even the judges who will say who came number one, number two or number three, they don't know.  But in our Scout Promise we say, 'On my Honour, I promise that I will do my best'.  If you did you best and you came last or you came first, then congratulations."

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As the ad says ......
"Where did they Come from?"

If you look at the Past Results, since 1998, you will not find 1st Heathfield anywhere.   Well, not until ... now. Not only do they appear on the list, but they made 7th overall, coming from nowhere to threaten the top Scout Troops and Guide Companies in the Western Cape.  Another motivated group of Scouts, Scouters and parents ensured that Heathfield were not only there for the fun, they were there with a mission.  They came 3rd in the Theme Dress and 11th for the raft meal.  Their second place for the Safmarine Trophy was only ONE point behind the winners, that is an outstanding accomplishment.  Along with their 12th place for raft construction they were guaranteed a place in the top ten.

Well done Heathfield.  See you next year.

 

Heathfield in Action


CAPE OF STORMS

April 2005 and Cape Town is in the middle of one of the worst droughts ever.  So it is appropriate that Kon-Tiki is credited with bringing some relief to it's citizens, even if temporary. 

It is an enormous credit to the constructors of the rafts that every single one of them stood up to the gale force black South Easterly that ripped through the fleet during the Saturday night. and Sunday morning at speeds of up to 50km/hour.   A few of the rafts, including Rondebosch/Cape Eastern's 61 and 1st Plumstead's 15. rode the storm out on their own anchors. 

The raft of 1st Muizenberg decided to go AWOL at around 10pm on Saturday night and that was the start of a busy night for the night watch crew.   Muizenberg's raft was brought safely back to the bay and secured.  The night watch crew had their hands full, ensuring that each raft had a crew member that was awake and alert in the event of any emergency, as well as periodically checking to ensure that rafts were not doing Titanic imitations.  Thanks to the night watch, everyone was safe and sound on Sunday morning.

The last raft had just returned to shore on Sunday afternoon and the heavens opened.  Thanks to the many supporters who understood the need for chaos ... it was, after all, the Kon-Tiki Adventure.

The Realm of The RingA Journey Through Middle Earth

For most, the journey through Middle Earth started very early in January, when the Scouting calendar commenced.  For the organizers, it started as the journey through Brazil ended and we bid farewell to Estêvão Salles as he headed back to the land of the Samba.

Because of the detail required when dealing with the theme of "Lord of the Rings" it was decided to bring a technical expert on to the team.  Charles Prince provided us with the insight into JRR Tolkien's trilogy and the interpretation of the text for the STAs, meals, raft appearance, theme flag, dress etc.  

The weather in the week leading up to Kon-Tiki was promising.  Warm, windless days.   We should have known better.  No sooner had the first truck arrived at the Sea Scout Base and it was clear that Sauron had kidnapped Mother Nature.  The wind picked up and was soon a gale force 35 to 50km south easterly, whipping white horses on to the earlier mirror-like water.  This did not worry the Scouts or Guides and the raft construction continued in earnest.  Of course the weather was just fitting into the dark theme of Middle Earth.

The first surprise for the raft teams was the introduction of 'the Precious'.Snug and Comfy Precious  Gimli (Charles Prince) Announced that the egg had to be protected throughout the weekend, making guest appearances when the meal and STAs were brought ashore.  One unfortunate decided the safest place was in her jeans pocket, until she sat down in the canoe.  Another, after having presented it to the judge, was so excited as he made his way back to his canoe that he forget he was carrying a precious cargo and it fell to the ground and his team mates didn't think it was a great yoke.  Some ingenious ways were found to protect the precious, providing looks of astonishment from some.   Chief Judge Gandalf was also well received by the team leaders as he appeared with his silver flowing hair and his white robe.  I'm sure he was confused about his grey or white periods.

The opening parade was an entertaining spectacle in itself as the theme music ushered in the competitors and visitors.  The costumes worn by the teams were no less that outstanding and the theme dress judges certainly had their work cut out for them.  More than one Gollum was seen interfering with other team members as they paraded around the ground.

Then it was the turn of the Water Safety Crew, with assistance from officers of TS Woltemade Sea Cadet Base, to go into action and assist the rafts in launching.  It was a spectacular scene as the rafts of Middle Earth paraded past the superstructure and into the Gulf of Lhun, as Kon-Tiki Bay was known.   A few of the rafts chose to ride out the strong wind using their own anchors, but most opted for the safety of the hawser.   The girls of 1st Plumstead in a canoe and the raft of 1st Muizenberg were the only major casualties during the weekend.  A few other canoes capsized and had to be rescued along with their occupants, but all in all, the rescue crews did a magnificent job in ensuring everyone's safety.  

Sunday morning saw no lessening of the strong wind as the teams brought their STAs to shore.   Then it was the turn of the canoeists who battled rough water and strong wind to race a predetermined course around Sandvlei.   The raft race was cancelled for obvious reasons. 

They're OffOn shore the fringe teams battled it out in volleyball, tug-o-war and kneeboard racing.   The cross-country race saw hundred of Scouts and Guides run the course from the Sea Scout Base, along the banks of Sandvlei, to Muizenberg and back.  

 

The retrieval of the rafts was another mission that was well executed, with all rafts and their occupants returning safely to terra firma. 

Just when it was thought that the weather might hold out, the skies opened and the rain came down in sheets, ensuring that everyone was suitably drenched.   Quick decisions had to be made and the closing parade was moved into the hall for the competitors, with most visitors that could not get into the hall, listening to the closing presentation over the effective sound system.   Our visiting Scouts and Scouters from Port Elizabeth arrived in a storm in 2004 and left in a storm in 2005.  Maybe we will get it right in 2006.

The Kon-Tiki Kitchen was busier than usual as visitors and competitors looked for hot food and something warm to drink.  This aspect of the weekend also ran like a well oiled machine, thanks to the many volunteers who worked long hours to ensure that our stomachs were filled with good food.   Inside the kitchen hall, visitors were treated to a multi media display as they enjoyed their meals.

The First Aid room was also busier than usual, including a couple of seasick Scouts who were brought ashore for some treatment before returning to their rafts.  All in a day's work for 'Doc'.

To all the competitors we say "Congratulations".  You have shown your mettle by withstanding lousy, adverse conditions to see the competition through to the end.  To the winners, "Well done".  To the many judges, helpers and their families, "Thank you".  What a team.  

See you all next year, in the land of "Cartoon Heroes".

CONGRATULATIONS TO:
Michelle February, Bridget Young, Charles Prince and Paul Jacobs who received Certificates of Merit for their continued hard work and support at Kon-Tiki.

Most Important Jobs

Jonathan Starke was once again the director of operations for traffic control and it was once again a huge success.   There were very few transgressors of traffic regulations this year, thanks to Jonathan and his team's strict control of access into the area.   Those that were illegally parked were politely asked to move and they did.  The control of traffic at Kon-Tiki is one of those jobs that, to a large extent, goes unnoticed, but it is one of the most critical of the entire weekend.  If the traffic control goes wrong, then most other things go wrong as well.  The job does not just include the direction of cars to various areas, but also the allocation of construction sites and the direction to campsites. 

Whatever you want
 ...
in a First Prize

It was a great pleasure and a surprise when the organizers of Kon-Tiki Middle Earth were approached by Mark Jennings of Pick 'n Pay and offered a prize to the winning team of five hundred rand in Pick 'n Pay shopping vouchers, which could be used to offset the costs of supplies for the winning Troop or Company's next camp or group hike. 

This very generous gesture was made by Suzanne Ackerman and we thank her very much indeed.

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RopeWorld of Steenberg were instrumental in a few teams being able to get the rafts built this year.  We thank them for their kind assistance in helping Groups who are in need of assistance.

KONTIKI 2005 - Cape Eastern Perspective

Kon-tiki 2005 - report by Carmen Warmenhove

We were advised months earlier of what to expect on our adventure to the Cape Western Land. All thirteen of us, and our two faithful leaders have survived the expedition and are back safely in our own homes and with our own families. Our time at Sandvlei was an adventure never to forget; now this is our story through my eyes.

All the meetings, discussions and preparations leading up to the trip, made it very exciting, but nerve racking, as I did not want to leave anything behind which will affect my role in the team going all the way to Cape Town.

Arriving at the Greyhound Bus Station on Thursday night, the 7th April 2005, I met up with all the other excited Scouts and our two leaders.  The beautiful T-shirts and new Cape Eastern scarves were handed out, indemnity forms filled in and final checklists ticked off. After saying our good byes to our “loving parents” we boarded the luxury bus and we were on our way…

The ten-hour trip felt long, tiring and for most…sickening! When we finally arrived in Cape Town in the morning, we got warm welcomes and a packed lunch from Aqua’s family. We then sat (still quite confused and dazed) and ate our KFC under the trees with the squirrels and pigeons. After our meal we walked to the Museum, which expanded our minds about dinosaurs, sharks and other little animals behind glass windows.

We then got onto the train to get to Sandvlei. The one thing that I did notice was that there are so many eccentric, arty people, with dreadlocks living in Cape Town. This made me realise that I was not in Port Elizabeth any more, but the beautiful and colourful Cape Town!

When we got to Sandvlei we were early but that was fine because it gave us time to relax for a while before the action started. We carried on building late into the night and then went for our well-deserved sleep in warm bunk beds.

The next morning we were all awake and ready to build our rafts, but first we had a yummy breakfast of an egg and bacon roll. For some big hungry Scouts there was more than just one roll. When our tummies were full we set out to finish our rafts.

Our raft consisted of 12 big barrels lashed together with poles, wooden boards tied on with nylon ropes and then our shelter, which was made out of wooden ‘sticks’ and a tent covering. It never worked quite well on the vlei due to the gale-force winds, but at least we know better for next year. We also had a toilet with just a little wooden board around it. We all thought that we will never need to use the toilet, but for some reason we needed it all the time. Maybe it was all the cooldrinks we drank and hearing the sound of water all the time.

Of course, everyone was doing his or her best to win a place on the raft. We were so focused on our building that we missed the whole opening parade, so we never even got to wear our tree ent costumes. Soon it was time to launch our rafts onto the water. The girls were pleased to find out that all four Cape Eastern girls were going on the raft and nobody got left behind. The two Rondebocsh girls, Monique and Mikhaela, and the four of us boarded the raft with our belongings, the trommel box, the food and our “precious” (an egg with a sign on it, which we had to protect with our life). We waved goodbye and got dragged off into the vlei. After we anchored ourselves, we got our STA requirements and immediately started on them. After a while we realised that our door was on the wrong side, the strong wind was blowing straight through our ‘tent’ door. That was not a problem, as clever Scouts; we moved our door to the opposite side, which meant that we had to go through our toilet to get outside but we tried to let the least wind in our tent as possible.

When it was time to start preparing our food to be judged, we realised that our gas was leaking. We rowed in our funny little blue canoe all the way to the base camp to ask for help but we had to row all the way back without any help as it was ‘against the rules’ to ask for help. Luckily somebody saved us just in time and fixed it for us. We were able to cook our stew and make the lembas bread. Then we realised that the judging time for the meal was almost over and we quickly had to get our table decorations, our three course meal and two of our Scouts into the canoe to present our meal to the judges. They were obviously impressed as we got one of the highest marks.

We had a cold, windy, noisy and disturbed night but at least it was just for one night. In the morning, as soon as the first bit of sunlight shone, we carried on with our STAs. We had to make various Lord of the Rings theme objects. Things like a map, a black gate, a crown and a tree ent (which we knew all about) which we made out of natural and junk material which we had to take onto the raft before the time. The 5th one was to catch a fish but we had no luck. We had to row to the base camp to receive our 6th STA. A few of us got extremely wet doing the 6th one. Two people from each raft had to canoe to each of the other rafts with a form. They had to draw the sign which was on their “precious” (the egg), complete the whole form and get it back to the base camp. It was quite a tough job, but working with the boys as a team made it easier.

The rest of the day we relaxed in the sun on the deck of the raft. We made coffee, ate chips and sweets and talked. We also fed our resident birds: The pair of Egyptian Geese, the pair of little brown ducks, the brave and beautiful white duck, the greedy seagulls and of course the many dumb little black moorhens. One of which was a loner and we named “Dabie”.

It started getting windy again and we could see rain coming and at about 2 o’clock it was time to be pulled in back to shore. When we got to shore we must have looked terrible. We hadn’t seen a toothbrush, a mirror, or even bothered to brush our hair but that’s just being a true Scout. Our flagpole and our whole structure were just about to collapse into a bundle of sticks and rags. When we finally hauled the rafts onto the shore to be undone and packed away, the heavens decided to open up, soaking us. It started to rain, then very hard drops of rain, and eventually it hailed, along with strong gusts of wind. Undoing the wet ropes was hard enough, but when you are wet and cold and working against time, it is quite a challenge. With teamwork and able helping hands we completed the task in time for the closing ceremony.

All packed, sore, tired, wet and for some, very sick, our Cape Town adventure had come to an end and we could feel it. Then all that was left was another 10-hour trip home. The ride back was not bad, we knew what to expect and it didn’t seem so long. We arrived in Port Elizabeth at about 7 o’clock on Monday morning. Most of us spent the rest of Monday sleeping and the rest of the week catching up on the homework we missed out on.

The Cape Town trip was an excellent experience for me, and the rest of the Scouts. We plan on using our experience from this year for next year, where we plan on giving the rest of the Cape Western Scouts and Guides a run for their money. We’ll show them next year! 

 

Cape Town every year for Kontiki - Report by Gerrit Lindeque

Thank you Aqua and Darzee for being part of the Cape Eastern team that could go down to Cape Town for the Kontiki 2005. From the moment we got onto the bus, we had fun. First of all they put me next to a girl, although I've asked to sit next to Andile. Luckily we switched around as soon as the bus left Port Elizabeth.

Kontiki was awesome especially for the raft building part. The fringe activities was also cool. The food vouchers was the best plan ever. Very organised. It was nice just to walk around with vouchers, and if you are hungry, you can go and get food and cold drink.

I really like the squirrels but I still think they are dangerous because they have long nails on their claws and they can scratch you.

I felt really sorry for the Scouts that return back to Port Elizabeth with a bug and was throwing up all night. This was a very good experience for me and I am looking forward to go to Cape Town every year for Kontiki.

 

West Cape Kontiki 2005 - Christine Postma

Just like last year, I got to the bus station late. Something I seem to do way too often! We stood together and Aqua handed out T-shirts, scarves and badges. The badges are green with a gold ring in the middle with the words ‘CW Kontiki 2005’ written over it in white. It has a brown border with Elvish writing on the inside. ‘Fellowship of the Eastern Cape & 6 Rondebosch’ is written in black. The T-shirts were great although they were not lime green! They had ‘Fellowship of the Eastern Cape’ written on the back and a Kontiki badge on the front. While we were in Cape Town we really stood out and you could tell who was from Eastern Cape from a mile away! The scarves were black with a red boarder and thankfully, the badge had been sewn on! I was seriously not looking forward to sewing the badge on in the bus, performing acupuncture on yourself does seriously hurt!

After kissing all the mommies and daddies goodbye, mine had left thankfully (they don’t love me any more) we boarded the bus. I was stuck sitting next to Derrick who seemed kind of scared at the thought of being stuck next to me the whole way there, but then again who wouldn’t be? If I were someone else, I would be afraid of sitting next to me the whole way there too! I wonder how Carmen does it. Well they saved him and sent me to sit next to Carmen. Soon the guy came and asked, 'Coffee or Tea?’ They all say the exact same thing, and then they give you two sugars, which you won’t need. The coffee is so flow that if you add any sugar it tastes like sugar water. I never thought I would find a coffee that I didn’t like but that came very close to being bad coffee. It didn’t stop me from ordering more later though. Then they put on some movie called ‘About Schmit’ it was black, white and boring.

We stopped at some weird little place with an Afrikaans name. We didn’t have many stops there because there were roadblocks, which wasted our time. Later we went past Mossgas. It was cool to see the balls of fire floating in the sky. We finally got to Cape Town and rode a long way through the city where we saw massive malls, Ratanga Junction, Table Mountain and many Golden Arrow buses.

When we got to the bus station, we got food from Aqua’s dad for lunch, which Steven already wanted to eat! Then we went to KFC for breakfast. It was so weird, that wacky wig place is still there, only bigger. It is so big that even Tina Turner could find a wig that would suit her but would not be so afro. I should have changed my blonde status! We walked to the Gardens (this time without the rain) and the cute squirrels were there again! Oh my word they are so cute with their little, thin bodies and big fluffy tails. Aaw I want one! We sat on the benches and ate KFC for breakfast. Many pigeons came and waited for us to throw them scraps. We threw them many pieces of bread and I guess lots of people do because it sure doesn’t look like they need it! There was a bunch of fat pigeons pecking at the bread and then suddenly a skinny little squirrel charged at them and stole their food while they flew away. It does need the food more than they do! We also saw an albino squirrel which would have been cute if it was not for the red eyes.

We walked through the Gardens to the South African Museum. There was a seagull sitting on the head of the statue of Cecil John Rhodes. We walked through a small rose garden but it was too bare and empty. When we got to the museum I was feeling a bit sick and, okay maybe a little tired. (Aqua doesn’t need to know that though!) That’s why I didn’t pay much attention, I was just looking for a place to sit down. There was a huge shark jaw, which opened with rows and rows of teeth. We also saw a whale skeleton. It could have swallowed all of us at one time, which Aqua might have enjoyed! We went into this barrel thing where we heard a whale sound get played. There were two cute black bears and a dead pangolin, which I touched. To be honest if just feels like a giant pine cone. Pinned to a board were pretty butterflies.

We walked back through the Gardens and there was another seagull on Cecil’s head. While we walked to the train station pickpockets tried to pick pocket Aqua, David and Jason. None of their attempts paid off though. Jason was insulted at being a target but very proud of himself and told each of us about it about five hundred times! While Aqua went to buy tickets we huddled together and two guys came up to us and started pointing to the badges particularly on Steven and Kevin’s shoulder. When the saw Kevin’s cyclist badge they started saying stuff about him fixing their bikes. It was sort of freaky then but thinking back it’s funny because the guys were all trying to watch the girls and David. When they asked Sam and Carmen (Sea Scouts) who they were, they said that they were the mini police. Soon a security guard came and chased the guys away.

We all got off the train at Sandvlei and started walking to the Sea Scout base. The two hours that we were early by made a big difference. Last time I had been overwhelmed by the activity but this time it was relatively quiet… well at least for the time being.

We were shown where our boat shed was and were impressed by the ‘cloak room’, which had been formed, by a cupboard which had a blanket thrown over it and a rail with a curtain on the other side. Inside was a locker and some hooks. It was cool because we didn’t have to shut our door each time someone wanted to change. It made up for the boat, which was standing in the middle but even that was not so bad. The guys had the boat shed that the girls had had last year.

Some guy with a camera!Some guy with a camera asked Aqua questions about the trip but she told him to ask me. All I can remember was that I said a load of rubbish and made a total fool of myself. I blame you Aqua! Soon we got the guys to help us push the boat out. Well that was the plan but only Derrick helped us. Our equipment hadn’t arrived yet so we painted our sail. It was green and we were painting leaves on it to match with our Tree Ent theme. Soon David was armed with a black koki and we all had our fingers covered in different shades of brown and grey paint. Okay let me change that, the girls’ fingers were covered in paint but the guys were too lazy or too afraid of getting their fingers dirty or… wait for it… Steven’s excuse… they were supervising. Yeah right! Soon the sail was covered in brown leaves and us in brown blotches. We washed our hands, lifted the sail, hung it from the rail, took one look at the floor and put the sail back on the floor. The floor had been redecorated and there were brown leaves all over it.

The equipment came late but we were eventually unpacking a truckload of equipment. We were scared when we learnt that all the truck contained was barrels, rope and… BAMBOO? Not exactly what we had been planning to build the rafts from, but we were told that another truck was on it’s way with pioneering poles. We had our whole raft planned and with plenty of adult help we started building our raft.

That’s the difference between Eastern Cape and Western Cape, in Eastern Cape the parents don’t help, but in Cape Town it’s possible that the parents do more work than the scouts.

We had soon built both frames and I had even learnt how to use the frapping mallet with a lot of help from Derrick.

Soon the adults had taken over lashing the barrels onto the rafts and Darzee told Jason and I that Aqua wanted to speak to us. We found Aqua in the girls’ boathouse and she told us that we would be the team leaders. We went to the team leaders briefing where Gandalf and especially Gimli looked really cool. We were given one ‘precious’ per raft. We were told to protect it and that they would like to see it in ‘it’s original state’ at the end. Each raft got an egg each with a different symbol on it. Our precious was soon wrapped in only about half a roll of toilet paper!

Aqua’s sister needed our brown t-shirts so that she could sew the leaves onto them. We asked Monique and Michala (6 Rondebosch girls) for their brown t-shirts but they didn’t have them. Eventually Monique told us that brown dresses had been made so we rushed to Aqua’s sister to tell her not to sew leaves onto our t-shirts but it was too late so we swapped t-shirts with the guys. The dresses weren’t there so we would have to sew leaves onto them the next day.

Just as we started laying down our floorboards to see where they would fit, we were told that it was 11 ‘o clock so we had to stop building. After setting our alarms for six, we went to sleep. The alarm never went off but thankfully, Carmen W woke us all up. We quickly woke the guys and then went to our raft to start putting on the floorboards. We still had to drill holes into the floorboards but no one was there, not even the drill, so we went back to the guys to check that they had woken up. Some of them were still lying in their sleeping bags but they were all awake. Walking back to the raft Aqua phoned me to check that we were all awake. We were better than you thought hey Aqua?

The drill still wasn’t there so we got the dresses from Liz, a really nice lady who had organised a lot for us. We took them back to our boathouse where we started sewing the leaves on. Two or three guys had slept outside our boathouse and they were still sitting there in their sleeping bags. David was sitting on the floor with us cutting roots and Andile was lying on one of the bunks. Liz was standing next to the door on the inside so she couldn’t be seen from the outside. The guys sitting outside were soon talking to us and joking about me who had stabbed my finger too many times. Laughing about the thread sewn to my finger the one guy introduced himself as David. We told them that the guy cutting was also David so this guy sitting outside said, ‘My name is also David.’ We said hi to him and the first guy quickly said ‘Shut up Storm.’ We were busy laughing about this but the funniest was still to come. They asked us what the average age of us was so we said about fourteen, then Liz stepped out and said, ‘Does that included me who’s forty?’ They got such a fright that they sat down and stopped speaking to us.

Aqua told us that they were busy drilling holes in the floorboards so we went to help but there were already so many people that we decided to start building the frame of the hut. The night before one hut had been erected by 6 Rondebosch but the other one still needed to be put up.

We carried the raft into the water and I’m not exactly sure what happened after that. Well I know what happened but I wasn’t there because that was the time that everyone chose to come and check that we had a whole bunch of stuff, lots of which I had never heard of before! I didn’t know where much of the stuff was so I imitated Liz asking for all this stuff, figuring out what stuff was, finding the stuff and eventually finding the people who were looking for the stuff because by that time I had lost them. It was chaos! I did learn a lot though, like what a trip line is. Until then, I had no idea what it was, I’m not a Sea Scout and I had never been raft leader at West Cape Kon-Tiki.

Two guys helped us attach the mast to a pole that was jutting out of the back of our raft and we started looking for toilet chemicals. We didn’t have time for the opening parade so our dresses and my bloody fingers were all for nothing. We had to give the West Cape guys a chance because they wouldn’t have looked good next to us!

We received our A class certificate and after some unneeded comments made by guys that obviously haven't accepted that girls are as good or better Scouts than guys, we were pulled out. We knew that we could be tied to a rope but we thought that most rafts would just drop their anchor so we were surprised when we saw that we were one of the few rafts that weren’t attached to the rope. We drifted a bit but soon realised that it was just because our anchor ropes were too long so we shortened them. Admittedly, I was nervous at first but soon I loosened up (just like my stomach).

We started clearing the inside of our raft because we did not have much space. That was when Darzee and some other guys brought us our STA instructions. We had to draw a map of Minas Tirith, build the black Gate, make Treebeard from nature craft, make Gandor’s crown or something like that, prepare a meal and the next day we would have to collect our last STA. We divide the STAs and soon the inside of the raft was covered with an assortment of nature and junk craft items. At about six we started to prepare the meal. Carmen M and I cut, peeled and squashed the three juicy fruits for the fruit juice while the others started chopping the vegetables and cutting the chicken for the stew. Soon all the ingredients were in the pot along with butter and a variety of herbs including Bay leaves. We then debated whether to cook the meal then and keep it warm until seven-thirty when it would be judged or whether we should just cook it later. Everything was going really well and we were feeling rather good about ourselves. That’s when it all went wrong. We screwed the gas hoods into the gas bottle. Well, we tried but it only went in half way, which wouldn’t have been so bad except that the gas leaked. We tried everything to cover the hole that included stuffing plastic all around it but nothing worked. Eventually Sam and Carmen W rowed to shore to set the table and to tell them that we were having problems with our gas. By this time, it was seven and the guys had agreed that we could use their cookers when they were finished but they hadn’t started yet.

We decided that the gas cooker might fit into the lamp’s gas bottle so we took the lamp off and with only torches for light we tried to put the cooker on but it didn’t work so we put the lamp back on. Another problem was that in the process we had lost the matches. Carmen W and Sam got back dripping wet and told us that all we could do was borrow someone else’s when they had finished. They had also been too early to set the table. We shouted to the guys and asked them if we could borrow their matches so Sam and I rowed to their raft. Jason gave us the side of the matchbox and two matches, one of which he dropped into the wet bottom of our raft. They were carefully put into my windbreaker pocket. We got back drenched and I dried my fingers before reaching into my pocket which I hoped would be dry. I quickly found the side of the matchbox but I got nervous when I couldn’t find the match. I finally found in between the seems. We opened the gas although you are supposed to light the match first; we didn’t want to row back to the guys. Finally, we had light. We lay inside our raft with our uncooked food, waiting for the guys to finish, when this guy came aboard our raft. He had come to fix our gas cooker. I felt bad that he had to enter through the toilet but we had closed the entrance because the wind was bad. He used some oil to make the thread more slippery, then using a dishcloth and lots of effort he screwed the cooker on properly. He then asked for matches so that he could check it and we were just about to launch into a long story when he brought out a lighter. He checked that every thing worked, lighting the one cooker to check it as well then he left. We were very thankful, especially since he had left the cooker on so we wouldn’t have to light it with our non-existent matches.

We lit a paper, which we used to light the other cooker. The pot was on and the flame as big as it could go since we didn’t have much time left. Sam, who knew the recipe for lambas bread mixed the ingredients together. We then poured blobs of it into a pan and since they cooked faster we were soon eating them. We heard the guys going past and heard that they hadn’t made the lambas bread. We emptied most of the stew into a smaller pot so that what was left would cook faster. The guys came back the told us that nearly every one was finished and that’s when we decided that the judges could rather have raw potatoes than nothing at all. A square of lambas bread was wrapped in a big leaf and many layers of tinfoil and newspaper and then a bit of stew was put in a bowl which was also wrapped in many layers of tinfoil and newspaper. Carmen M and I were given a push off and told to hurry, which we did! When we got to shore someone took our tender and we ran into the hall where the judges were on their way out. We were the only raft team there and I felt very self-conscious but I generally stress too much. Every one was taking photos and asking questions as we set the table, which looked pretty good. The judges actually seemed impressed with us despite our lack of punctuality and one of them even lit our candle.

Back at the raft, we were all too tired to cook the rest of the supper so we had BNs, chocolate and muffins for supper. Monique and Michala were meant to be on night watch first but since Michala was already asleep, I went on in her place. Pretty soon Carmen M came and sat with us because she couldn’t sleep. Michala woke up and came outside so I went in to sleep. I was woken and told that it was now my shift with Carmen. We sat there shouting to the guys who were about twenty meters away. When the night watch people came around, we greeted them before they even said hello and we got stuck doing five star jumps. It was lots of fun but as the morning wore on, and after we were woken up by the night watch, we called Sam and Carmen W for their shifts.

That morning we quickly completed our STAs and took them to the hall. After begging for coffee from the guys, we decided to boil water and make our own. We had found our matches while we were making the STAs. We were soon drinking coffee and then we rowed to shore to fetch our last STA. We had to find out what each teams symbol was on their precious. We made a deal with the guys who got half and we got the other half. Why not pool your resources! After rowing to many of the rafts and collecting the other page of answers from the guys we handed in our page.

All that had to be done was wait for two hours and then be towed back to shore. Well that was how it should have been but our hut structure was giving in. Poles that should’ve been standing at 90º were standing at a 60º angle. We packed every thing away, all our sleeping bags were tied together, the pillows were tied together and everything else had been thrown into the trommels. Happy that if the structure fell everything would be safe we opened a can of condensed milk, packet of peanuts and cans of cool drink which we ate while sitting at the back of the raft sheltered from the wind in the sun. Every one except Michala was urging the hut to fall. Michala though had a life jacket on and was busy holding one of the poles up.

We were eventually towed in and the hut had still not collapsed! We took down the rafts and just as both of them were out of the water, it started to rain. Not lightly, it rained. LOTS! We were soaking and I went to the closing ceremony with a tablecloth wrapped around me because I never had time to change. The few Eastern Cape scouts at the ceremony were all wet but all of the Western Cape guys were dry so I’m just wondering who took the raft apart, the scouts or the parents.

We dried ourselves, packed our bags and went to the station where more pickpockets met us. After a long boring bus trip we reached PE where I even got out of school. Overall I had an awesome time, the weekend was incredible, and I’d like to thank the organisers and Aqua for all the effort that went it to it. It really was appreciated.

_______________________________________

From Lin Mould

It started late Thursday night at about quarter to ten. We all boarded the Greyhound bus and left for Cape Town. We rode on the bus for about 11 hours !!!  We all had a lot of fun talking and kidding around until we were told to keep quiet by Darzee.

When we woke up the next morning (Friday), they plated a movie called "About Schmidt" - which was the most boring movie that I have ever seen in my life!!!!!

We eventually got off the bus at 9.15 in Cape Town and we took our bags to the bakkie and then we went to KFC. for breakfast. We each got a rounder and a box of chips as well as a cool drink, although we all got different ones.  We took our lunch (?) to the gardens where all the guys went squirrel mad - at least it wasn't Christine this time!!!

After we ate we went to the SA Museum where there was a really weird guide that spoke to us as though we were three year olds.  Every time we got to an animal he would say - " Now once again I would like to say that this is not a live animal, it is NOT alive!). When we got to the whale -sounds machine there was this huge model of the whale in front of us and he told us that we mustn't be scared of the whale because it wasn't alive, and that it wasn't making the noise that we were hearing.  When we left the museum we went to the station where we got another cool drink. We then boarded the train and went to the Sea Scouts base in Sandvlei.

When we got there we  were shown our room (a boat shed), where we were to sleep that night. When our stuff was unpacked in our room we all just sat around for a while until Aqua told us that we could paint our sail - little did we know just how thin it was - as we permanently left our mark on the boatshed carpet. It now has beautiful brown leaves painted on it!!!

When the equipment finally arrived we started building our rafts - one for the girls and one for the guys. We built until late that night and it was FREEEEEEEZING cold. at 11 p.m. we were told to stop building and to go to sleep.

The next morning when we woke up we went outside to go and finish building the raft, just to find that Rondebosch weren't there yet and that we couldn't build until they got there. When our raft was almost done we were told that all of us girls were going on the raft and that we must get our stuff packed as soon as possible. When we were ready Aqua brought us lunch which was 2 X chicken sandwiches and coffee. We got on the raft and dropped the anchor of our class A raft.

On the raft we did our STA's and cooked our meal. Our meal was the most fun thing on the raft because we had a leak in our attachment pipe and we had to wait for it to be fixed by a leader. When it was fixed we had a whole half an hour to cook a meal that would normally take over an hour to cook - stew and lambos bread!!!!!  But it all turned out O.K. even if the potatoes were a bit hard! We got our food to the judges just as the clock struck 20h30!!!!

That night on night watch, Christine and I were on watch from 23h00 until 04h00 Sunday morning.  When we finished our last STA we got towed in and started to dismantle the raft  when  it started hailing!  When we were done we tried to get dry and went to the bus station, got on the bus and came home.

We were just about all sick and I don't think that ANYONE will have gone to school that Monday.

SEE YOU NEXT YEAR AGAIN!!!!!

_______________________________________

By David McGillivray

I attended the Cape Western Kontiki on 8th-10th April. We drove down to Cape Town in a Greyhound bus. The trip felt long and a number of us were car-sick, and felt nauseous from being on the top floor of the bus. The bus swayed much more than the rafts! (so the raft team said afterwards).

When we arrived in Cape Town we went and bought some food from Kentucky Fried Chicken. Then we walked to the Gardens where we ate our food, while the squirrels ran about us. Then we went to the Natural History Museum where a tour guide showed us around. We had an interesting time at the Museum.

While we were walking to the railway station, we passed through a crowd of people when suddenly Jason, Aqua and I were pick-pocketed all at the same time. With me someone sitting on the ground tried to take my wallet out of my pants pocket, but I stopped him in time by kicking him and he left me alone. With Jason someone actually stuck his hand into his pocket and took his cell-phone. But Jason was quick enough and whacked the guy’s hand and he dropped the cell-phone and Jason hurriedly put it back in his pocket. With Aqua some really smart-looking guy tried to take something out of a side pocket of her bag. He soon found out that he should not mess with Aqua. Fortunately the pickpockets did not get away with anyone’s possessions.

We reached the station safely, and caught a train almost to Sandvlei and walked the rest of the way to the Sea-Scout Base. When we arrived at the Sea-Scout Base, we were shown where we were to stay. It was in a boat-shed with bunks bolted into the wall and with a boat in the middle.

We sat around for a few hours waiting for our equipment to arrive. We knew our time was ticking away. We had to make two rafts: one for boys and one for girls. Little things like this delay made our time shorter. By the time it eventually arrived, all the other groups were well under way with their rafts. From then we worked solidly until supper which Darzee brought to us while we were working. We carried on working after supper till 11pm, which was lights out time.

We all slept very well, except for Derek who got sick in the middle of the night. He then phoned his mom, who phoned Aqua, who came and cleaned up for him.

When we woke up the nest morning, we immediately wanted to start working again. However, the floorboards we were using for the rafts had no holes in them so we could not tie them down and get on with the rest of the two rafts that we had to build. So we had to wait for approximately 2 hours until we got hold of a drill. Then it took still longer because we still had to drill the holes. Due to our delays we had to miss joining in with the parade. This was a pity as we had prepared outfits to be the trees from Lord of the Rings. In the end we managed to finish the rafts just in time.

We were all very surprised and proud that both of our rafts got an A sea-worthy certificate.

Many people came to help us lift the rafts up and half drag and half carry them into the water. However, in the process of getting them into the water, a whole lot of barrels came loose and had to be retied in the water. We had been given nylon rope with which to tie the rafts. It came loose very easily. We had just finished retying the barrels and putting the huts on the rafts, when the motorboat came to pull our raft out into the lake.

Our rafts’ huts were made out of a wooden frame with canvas pulled tightly over it. They were not very strong and sturdy, so they had to be tied on very securely. Other raft huts were made of wood and much better decorated than ours.

Once all the rafts were towed out onto the lake, the Scouts on the land began the fringe activities. I was part of the Fringe Activities. The first thing we did was tug-of-war. We won the first few rounds and then lost against some big guys, but all in all we had a lot of fun (it was on a slippery mat with water on it.) We then did volleyball and my hand got very sore and bruised from playing so many games. Eventually we were eliminated, and I was quite thankful. We did not have time that day to do knee boarding.

Later, when it got dark, there was a campfire for all the land teams to come to. The Cape Eastern fringe team did a skit. Several other groups also presented skits. The campfire had a lot of new songs and skits that I had never heard or seen before. We then all went to bed and slept soundly. There was no vomiting that night.

In the morning we did the cross-country run. Everyone who wanted to run could do so. Everyone was sorted into different categories. I was in the junior boys. The race officials showed us where to run on a map. Then, suddenly BANG and the race was on. I came 3rd in the race. As soon as everyone was back we went and did knee boarding. We won the first round because the other team had chickened out of it, but we lost the next round. Last year the kneeboards were far too big for me, but this year at least my arms could fit over the sides a bit better.

Later in the afternoon the rafts were all brought safely in. The weather was cloudy, raining and windy the whole weekend. As we started to undo the lashings, the heavens suddenly opened and it poured with rain. Then suddenly we felt a stinging feeling as hailstones hit us. It felt like someone was throwing pebbles at us. We continued untying the rafts despite the rain and hail because we had to finish before prize giving and leaving to board the bus back to PE. The Capetonians were joyful, as they had had very little rain over the last few months. It must have been Aqua’s coming to Cape Town that did it! When we had finished untying the ropes we went to prize giving. Although we didn’t win any prizes, we were proud of how we had performed despite all the setbacks we had experienced.

After prize giving we rushed to catch the bus on time. On the sidewalk in the centre of Cape Town, while waiting to board the bus, we had about 6 suspicious strangers walk openly around us, looking at us like we were their prey. I am sure that if we had stayed on the sidewalk a bit longer they would have attempted to steal some of our belongings.

On the bus-trip back home, a lot of us were sick again as the bus swayed from side to side. Most of us did not sleep very well. We reached PE at last - an extremely tired bunch of kids and 2 adults.    

Although we had some hardships and frustrations, I enjoyed the weekend and have some lasting memories. It was good to be part of such a big event. I was proud to be part of the Cape Eastern Team. I would like to thank all the organisers and sponsors for all their time and effort (especially Aqua and Darzee). It was a valuable experience.

 

Visit the 2005 Results and Past Results pages to see how the various teams did this year and how they have fared since 1998.

2007 - One World One Promise
 
"The Journey of Kon-Tiki"

 

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