Monday, April 29, 2013
RA Camp 2013- One State Champion and Two Soggy Bottoms
You see this picture? This is a picture of a State Champion knot tying master! Reid is the fastest Royal Ambassador bowline knot tier for the year 2013, an honor that he has worked hard on for the past three years. He has finished second on two consecutive tries, but this year he brought home the gold! What is even more remarkable is that he was able to accomplish this just hours after his father totally humiliated him in front of all of his friends and fellow campers. Let's back up a bit.
The annual First Baptist RA camping trip to Camp Kaleo is always an exciting trip for all the boys. We have been working on camping skills for weeks and we were prepared to meet all the challenges that would be given to us in all of the competitions. We were not prepared however for heavy rains and 40 degree temps that the weatherman was calling for on Friday night. We made the wise decision to leave the tents at home and stay inside one of the cabins offered for large groups. Friday night was a wet one, but Saturday promised to be clear and cold.
We woke up Saturday morning to temps in the low 40's. The boys were ready to begin the competitions, so we headed out to the competition grounds. The boys can compete in team knot tying, chariot races, BB gun shooting, archery, first aid, map and compass, wild wood runs, fire building, and a canoe race. We started with the wild wood run and made our way over to the canoe racing area shortly after. We have done well in this event in the past, bringing home three state titles thanks to my good friend Dr. Cook. Reid and I finished 2nd in this event last year, so I only had one thing on my mind! I wanted the crown!
The race is a timed event in which you paddle the canoe out to a buoy, make a turn around it and head back to shore. As I watched my buddy Dr. Cook set a blistering pace just two spots in front of me, I knew that Reid and I would have to be fast. I thought his turn was a little sloppy so I set my goal in making a tight turn and pushing extra hard back to shore to lower our time. We would never quite get that far. Reid and I settled into the boat and I gave him instructions to just worry about paddling on the right side. I would handle the rest. We kicked off and I gave a mighty two strokes on the left side rocketing the boat forward with enormous thrust! As I switched to the right side to straighten our line of direction while maintaining our quick pace, I over guessed my own strength and enthusiasm and accidentally slid to the right side of the boat. This was not good. My next stroke was my own swimming motion towards my son to make sure that he was safe as we were both now taking a swim in 40 degree weather.
Reid was in a little panic, but I assured him that he was not going to drown because he was wearing a life jacket. I calmly told him to swim to shore and that I would be right behind him. I tried to gather the boat but quickly realized that the heavy coat, cargo pants and hunting jacket were starting to weigh me down to the point that this was not going to be an easy swim. I ditched the boat and headed for dry land. I reached the shore soon after Reid was being pulled from the water by the others in our group.
In case you are wondering, the water was warmer than the outside air. Being in the water was not bad at all. Getting out was a B----! Reid was not happy and he let me know it. I got him calmed down and we made our way back to the cabins where I was able to put him in a hot shower. After we were warmed up and had changed into dry clothes, I sat him down and had a life lesson kind of talk. I told him that sometimes bad things happen, but that it was very important to remain calm in those kind of situations and to think clearly about how best to go about fixing the situation that you are in. He seemed to understand, but I don't think I will get him back into a canoe anytime soon.
We made our way back to the competition fields to face the music. His friends were actually very good to him and didn't make fun of the situation at all. They were generally concerned for him. My friends on the other hand, let me have it. I now have a new nick-name... Trey Beauche, The Water Boy.
Reid rebounded well as he helped his knot tying team place second in the team tying event and placing first in the individual event. He hasn't talked much about our little swim and he seems to almost have forgotten about it. His Dad however has been reminded about it on a daily basis!
Got to love my friends!!