Sunday, June 26, 2011
One Post Script to camp this year and a story that should have been told earlier. I've had a lot of people ask, "why do you go all the way to Missouri for camp." I try to explain that the camp is top notch and that it's well run and well organized, but the big difference is Mic-O-Say and what it means to people. First of all the whole Mic-O-Say experience is a magical thing for all who get into the tribe. But one person in particular really summed up what it is all about for all of us. In advance, I'll confess not having done due diligence in getting all the necessary details. The story as I know it is as follows.
One scout, from a troop around the area in Missouri, had never walked before. He had been in scouting for a time, but for obvious reasons, could only do so much. A short while back, he had a surgery that finally had given him the ability to use his legs. He was quite literally, learning how to walk from scratch. He is on crutches. This young man was determined to be tapped into the tribe. Thursday night he was. Being tapped means you'll be doing some running, and some other activities at camp. You might think this story would be leading to how this young man did all of these activities without a hitch. But no, the story is better than that. The boys who were tapped were guided here and there by the runners of the tribe. When this young man, who managed to get many places on his crutches through sheer will ran into an issue that may have been too difficult, those runners literally carried him on their backs to complete the tasks. As you may know, there are many hills we have to go up every day, and it was up these hills on narrow paths that the runners helped carry this young man up. It was not only that this young man was determined to become a member of the tribe, but the staff at Camp Geiger was determined to see him succeed as well. This is why we go. We're not just going to camp, we're going to a place where a group of people are committed to having young men succeed in reaching their goals, no matter what obstacles they face.
The young man who could not walk a short time ago, did in fact reach his goal and through determination, and the helping hand of someone to carry him through, he is now a brave in the tribe of Mic-O-Say.
Friday, June 24, 2011
As the sun sets on the mighty and swollen Missouri River, we get ready to close camp tonight. Something different for dinner. We had a barbecue in the trail to first class area, just like families getting together for a holiday. After dinner the Camp staff puts on the closing campfire, another great show by a great staff. After that, the tribe of Mic-O-Say will meet on the tribal grounds and welcome in the new braves. Current braves become warriors, and warriors become fire builders. All that 24 hours after the impressive tapping fire, which still burns at this hour.
They also made time to take a few cracks at the new rifle and archery range.
We had our last meal at the dining hall with our lunch today. Tonight dinner will be served in tapper valley, and the scouts and scouters who are not in Mic-O-Say will be treated to another great show at the council fire by the Camp Staff. The Tribe of Mic-O-Say will gather on the tribal grounds and welcome all the new members of the tribe. Also there are warriors who are advance to fire builders, and those are:
The saw the fire as they emerged from the woods and they saw the braves and warriors dancing around it. Then the members of the tribe came down a great hill to form two lines. The braves and warriors run through these lines and eventually fill them in at the end for the scouts and scouters to walk through. It is there that they form a giant circle around the fire and wait for the tapper to emerge. The tapper runs down the hill when the circle is complete with a torch in one hand and a tomahawk , runs around the circle sizing up the potential candidates. He pauses in front of some and moves on. Others however he looks them up and down, deems them worthy, and taps them twice on the chest with his tomahawk. Those who are tapped begin a night of adventure, and start their journey to become a member of the tribe of Mic-O-Say.
Now, what you've been waiting to hear. Scouts who were tapped in as candidates for the tribe of Mic-O-Say are:
Ellis C., Kaleb D., Kelby E., Riley H., Andre K., Justin K., Shelby M., Anthony M., Matthew P., Jack P., Jonathan P., Trey S., Matthew T., Justin W., Wes W.
Adults who were tapped were: Chad Faust, Lee Rebodos
Today they continue on their journey to become members of the tribe of Mic-O-Say. Tonight is the night when they find out if they are in.
Breakfast: Biscuits and Gravy, Yogurt, Cereal.
Weather: Mostly Clear, 67 degrees
Thursday, June 23, 2011
"I can feel it, coming in the air tonight...." - Phil Collins
The big night is upon us. The boys who are already in Mic-O-Say are getting into their regalia now in anticipation of the big event. Lots of boys are getting more and more excited as the moment gets closer. There is much hope and anticipation in the air. Those in Mic-O-Say depart for the big event.
On a quick note, today was a big mountain boarding day for the older scouts. It's like a skateboard with giant wheels that you use to "surf" down the giant hills here at Geiger. Robby Barry, below, was doing a great job....
At dinner tonight was the big King Peewee crowning, the contest where we find the smallest scout in camp (based on weight). We were two time defending champs, and although young Chad represented Troop 451 proudly, he was undone by a much more (or less) opponent. Way to represent Chad!
Weather: Clear and 78 degrees.
Soon we'll gather for dinner and then the big night tonight, the Tapping Ceremony.
Lunch: Ham and Cheese sandwiches, pasta salad, cake.
Weather: Mostly Sunny 77 degrees, breezy.
Waking up this morning, the boys file out of the Arapaho campsite, down the gravel road towards the dining hall as they head for breakfast. There are many conversations, yet one prevailing subject. "I wonder if I'm gonna get tapped tonight. Yeah, I think I am. I think you will too." Tonight is a very big night at Camp Gieger. Tonight, is when the tribe of Mic-O-Say welcomes new members. As the day goes on, the boys get more and more excited. We'll have a description of what they'll be experiencing tonight a little later in the day.
Tonight is also the night of one of the fun contests at dinner. This is the night we crown the new "King Peewee"! King Peewee is the smallest scout in camp, based on weight. It's a tough competition, but Texas always seems to come through. Once the king is crowned he gets to make a proclamtion that all on the camp staff must abide by. Troop 451 is proud to have the reigning champ and he had a few words on his reign and some advice on how the king can best serve his troop:
We woke to a wonderfully crisp morning with 58 degree temps and hardly any breeze. It was a nice little oasis in the middle of a summer of Texas heat. We ate breakfast and everyone headed to their classes, but excited about tonight, and the anticipation that camp is coming to a close.
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, sausage, fruit, cereal, yogurt
Weather: Mostly sunny, 67 degrees
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
We were fortunate to have some family come up today, with more to come tomorrow. The other great reason for celebration today was scouting itself. Today is the day when the families and the troops gather around the council fire and enjoy a show put on by the incredible camp staff. Troops also participate with skits of their own. The staff provides their own comedy also.This is also the time we see the Tribe of Mic-O-Say for the first time. They always give a very serious and reverencial performance, as well as having the chance to show the elaborate costumes they have worked on all year.
This year's Mic-O-Say Dance featured 3 our our own boys doing the Eagle dance, Noah B., Suraj D., and Will M.
Dinner: Little Ceaser's Pizza
Weather: Mostly Clear 70 degrees (but feels much cooler.)