Thursday, July 19, 2007

Things were different then

At camp 30 years ago:

A Girl Scout pocket knife was on our required "to bring" list for camp. Imagine: 80+ girls between 8 and 16 roaming around armed with a weapon you can't even put in your carry-on luggage today.

At one camp, if the trail head for that day's hike was too far from camp to walk to, they piled us in the back of a couple of old pick-up trucks and drove us there. Squirrely kids in the back of a truck on winding mountain roads: What a great idea!

We brought drugs to camp with us. We had to turn in prescription meds to the camp nurse, but we all had a small pharmacy in our tents and shared aspirin, cough drops, eye drops and midol as needed.

We had to eat at least "three girl scout bites" of everything we were served.

Not better, necessarily. But different.


ppb said...

memory lane!!! I LOVED my Girl Scout knife!

I told my niece to have 2 girl scout bites of something (apparently midwestern scouts only had 2 required bites) and she looked at me with scorn and said, "I'm a brownie."

ellbee said...


Did you have to wear the head scarf (1/2 bandana) when you were on dinner patrol?

The one time I thought the 3 GS bites would kill me was the Mac & Cheese made from melted down pimento cheese.

still makes me shudder...

SpookyRach said...

*choking a little at the pimento cheese and macaroni comment*

This is a hoot!

Mark Smith said...

I've been helping with check-in at the local church camp (PCUSA).

The number of kids taking prescription medications is close to 50% now. Back when I was a camper, it was maybe 10%.

Lots of ADD and allergy meds today.

And don't get me started on "you aren't allowed to have a cell phone" when the non-custodial parents INSISTED that the kid have a cell phone, even though he/she isn't dropping the kid off.

Anitra said...

I also learned to swing a mighty wicked axe. One of my secret prideful things: I can build a one match fire.

Presbyterian Gal said...

Those were the days, weren't they? When we were given axes and matches to actually USE. And knives for each of us, with lessons!!!

I forgot about the "three girl scout bites". Fortunately my mom reduced it to two.

and Mark: I think you're onto something that would make an interesting anthropological study.

ppb said...

One match fire and ax skills here, too!

I think one thing that makes me sad about the highly litigous-phobic world of anything with kids these days is that it's so hard to give kids these experiences--the we trust you with a knife or ax or fire experiences that meant SO MUCH to me as a kid.

Gord said...

mark's comment reminded me of a conversation I once had with the camp nurse on the first night of camp. WE had just finished the drug round-up and looked at the haul and one or the other commented that we could take it to the city and make a small fortune.