Boy Scout Camp: Camp Meriwether
In June, I took over as Scoutmaster for my son’s Boy Scout troop. This was my first Boy Scout camp where I was in charge as the head Scoutmaster. In year’s past, I have always been the Assistant Scoutmaster; not the guy in charge. I’m happy to report that this year things went smoothly at summer camp. No major issues to report. The new First Year Scouts (that have recently joined our troop) weren’t too homesick and our older scouts weren’t too much of trouble makers this year. No fires to report; no hazing; only one scout who wandered off in the middle of the night; and only one disrespectful scout (who won’t be coming back) because as I told him “There is a new sheriff in town.”
We had 19 scouts and 6 adults attend Camp Meriwether (located on the Oregon Coast near Tillamook) this summer. It was nice to go back to the same Boy Scout summer camp again this summer. Again, we were luckily enough to have a great campsite with a beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean. It is quite a bonus to wake up and see the surf crashing on the beautiful sand beach each morning.
Boy Scout summer camp is in no way a picnic. It is fun but it isn’t a vacation. A vacation would entail me actually relaxing, sleeping in a comfortable bed, drinking a nice bottle of beer (or scotch) and having some really good food. In reality, Boy Scout camp is me having to walk at least five minutes to a flush toilet, ten minutes to a hot shower, and waking up every morning at 6 am. Not exactly my ideal vacation. I also have to supervise 19 Boy Scouts who are mostly teenagers or pre-teens. Imagine herding cats and you now know what Boy Scout camp is like.
Some of the Boy Scouts are good; some are misdirected. They are typical teenagers. They want to sleep in (but they can’t). They stay up too late. Their nerves on at their last shreds of working and they begin to annoy each other. They don’t take enough showers. Some scouts like to take two showers a day while others don’t shower for the whole week. Throw four boys into a cabin and it looks like the room was tossed by some overzealous vice cops on a drug bust; the cabin is just plain awful. God knows if they actually brush their teeth or not. Wash their hands? One can only hope.
On the plus side, we had great weather with mostly sunshine and no rain. The food isn’t bad but I wouldn’t eat it long term. To be fair, Camp Meriwether has the best food I have experienced at a Boy Scout camp. Overall, the Scouts (and the adults) had a positive experience.