Phone 4344 1844     Fax 4344 1944     Email us.

Skip Navigation Links.
Collapse Issue 230 - 14 Dec 2009Issue 230 - 14 Dec 2009
Collapse  DREDGING DREDGING
Dredging starts after two years
Navigation advice during dredging
Look at future funding - Chamber
Freewater: 'I won'
Collapse  NEWS NEWS
Andrews would make better Minister - Hartcher
Chamber welcomes tourism appointment
Planning affected by sea level rise
Latino playgroups starts next year
Chamber disappointed at Umina Mall refusal
New plan to be exhibited
Estate agents work with their children
Repairs to beach track
High level of homelessness
Stabbing arrest
Petitioners support mini-soccer field
Oyster lease removal welcomed
Recognised for voluntary work
House named in top 10
Brigade calls for preparedness
Car boot sale
Local beaches win awards
Camel trek ends in Melbourne
Activities stop for summer recess
Playground 'fixed by Christmas'
Christmas tree for dogs
Gifts for those in need
Seeking witnesses
National Park tours
Start time
Dry start to December
Company formed to record history
Nature tours planned
Council works
New children's store
Store raises $3780 for charity
Estuary study to be exhibited
Collapse  FORUM FORUM
Where is the mayor's apology?
Deceptive use of English
Hospital built with lamingtons
Ejected into summer heat
Working to bring a community together
Name request finally decided
Opportunities to be involved
Pollution-free fireworks?
Share indigenous knowledge
Scouting as it once was
They do what they want
Traumas result of electoral system
People owning banks
Collapse  EDUCATION EDUCATION
Teagan has small footprint
Rotary visits school farm
Council organises holiday activities
New assistant principal
Sport leadership trial
Show raises $275
Book fair
Carols raise $1000
Year 12 holds formal night
Exploring school
Graduates in general education
Collapse  ARTS ARTS
Surf club holds special exhibition
Guide for Pearl Beach environment
Pearl Beach history to be launched
Mind Priorities plays at Erina
Water theme to exhibits
Song-writing in Woy Woy
Collapse  HEALTH HEALTH
Information about relay
Glasses will be recycled
Party for men's health
Christmas outing for Aged Care
Memorable year at Peninsula Village
Collapse  SPORT SPORT
Former star makes comeback bid
Ocean Beach dominates in pool rescue
Surf club celebrates 50 years
Award to bush biker
Liam scores 170 runs
New boat for competition
Ham and turkey bowls carnival
Ocean swim
Water polo
Collapse  HISTORY HISTORY
The beginning of Umina Surf Life Saving Club
The Peninsula's first people
Harry Boyle
Famous cruiser is regular visitor
Collapse  REVIEW REVIEW
Belinda Neal - Member for Robertson
Marie Andrews - Member for Gosford
Chris Holstein - Gosford mayor
Collapse  PROMOTION PROMOTION
Chance to win
Winner

Scouting as it once was

With enough noise to wake up every wallaby and goanna in the district, we sang a few more rousing choruses of the Quartermaster's Store and then threw in a few inappropriate verses, much to the delight of the Scouts and much to the embarrassment of the patrol leaders gathered around the campfire.

The occasion was our annual camp at Camp Kariong and, after a day of hiking, games and badge work, we were all ready to turn in for the night.

Apart from many other things, camping gave us an opportunity to establish our independence and show our families that we were quite capable of looking after ourselves.

Just because we ate baked beans morning, noon and night (with rather unfortunate sound effects), splashed a bit of cold water on our faces to maintain an acceptable level of hygiene, and disregarding the ever-mounting pile of dirty washing, certainly didn't mean we missed our mothers, their delicious meals or our comfortable warm beds.

Anyone who has ever bitten into a rock-hard, burnt, charcoal-covered damper knows the true delights of camping under the stars.

Never mind the mosquitoes transfusing our youthful bodies, or lying awake listening to the delightful sounds of mating possums.

Our troop leader at the time was Basil Knight who was ably assisted by Roy Seckold.

Basil was a local electrician and one of the most caring and dedicated people you could ever wish to meet.

His wife Ruby was the local Guide leader, and together they worked tirelessly to support and lead the local Scout and Guide movement.

The Scout hall incidentally was located in Ocean View Rd directly opposite what is now the new Ettalong Hotel, and next door to a private library owned and operated by the late Edna Boyd.

We used to meet every Friday night, with the occasional visit to the beach for games.

Once a year, we were all involved in a major fundraising drive aptly named Bob-a-Job Week.

Scouts were willing to take on any job from babysitting to lawn mowing, washing the family car, or simply posting a few letters.

On completion of the job, the housekeeper would be asked to complete and sign the Bob-a-Job card carried by the Scout, and this would then be handed over at the end of the week with the proceeds.

In the absence of any other major charitable collections in those days, most people got into the spirit of things and happily paid more than the minimum amount of one shilling.

Others would simply ask the Scout to carry out some menial task like washing dishes or polishing shoes for a substantial reward.

One event we eagerly looked forward to each year was "bonfire" or "cracker" night.

It would now be unimaginable (as well as illegal), but in the weeks leading up to the June long weekend (originally celebrated on Empire Day, May 24), huge bonfires would be erected right around the district.

Most would have an effigy of Guy Fawkes (not unlike a scarecrow) mounted on top.

We used to build our bonfire in the middle of what is now Ettalong Oval, and everyday more old palings, discarded building materials and dead trees and branches would be stacked on the rapidly growing pile.

Even old tyres were collected and mixed in with anything inflammable.

It was amazing how a group of generally well-behaved, angelic young boys could turn into a rabble of potential pyromaniacs.

At the same time, we used our carefully-saved pocket money to buy the biggest and best fireworks on the market.

Most general stores sold fireworks, including sky rockets, Catherine wheels and penny bungers.

Some even sold sixpenny bungers which were highly effective in blowing up wooden letter boxes.

Come the big night, we all gathered at the oval, together with lots of parents, neighbours and spectators.

Forget about rubbing sticks together to start the fire as we had been taught!

Instead we used plenty of newspapers and matches to ignite the stack.

In no time at all the flames reached the top, sending thousands of glowing red sparks into the cool night air.

Poor old Guy Fawkes was soon alight and, with an almighty roar from the crowd, collapsed into the inferno.

Fireworks were let off and skyrockets illuminated the sky above and the houses nearby.

Exploding bungers created a cacophony of noise, intermingled with the shouts and screams of excited youngsters, with singed hair and a few burnt fingers being the only casualties.

One only had to look at the happy faces and listen to the oohs and aahs from us kids to realise how much we all enjoyed the night.

Mind you, one could also discern the occasional look of concern on the faces of some of the parents who perhaps understood the potential danger.

When the fireworks ran out and the smoke had drifted away, we sat around the dying embers feeling rather pleased with ourselves, and planning a much bigger and better bonfire for the following year.

Comments


Add a comment
Comments entered here may be published in the Forum section of Peninsula News. Name, full residential address and daytime telephone number are required, but only name and suburb will be published. This is a moderated forum: Contributions will not appear here until they are approved by the editor. Contributions may appear in an edited form.


Name:
 
Address:
Suburb:
Telephone:
Comment:
 

 
  • Access

    pictures/300_Access.jpg

    Access

  • Agents

    pictures/300_Agents.jpg

    Agents

  • Annivers

    pictures/300_Annivers.jpg

    Annivers

  • BandPlay

    pictures/300_BandPlay.jpg

    BandPlay

  • Bowling

    pictures/300_Bowling.jpg

    Bowling

  • BushBike

    pictures/300_BushBike.jpg

    BushBike

  • BushFire

    pictures/300_BushFire.jpg

    BushFire

  • Camel

    pictures/300_Camel.jpg

    Camel

  • Cricket

    pictures/300_Cricket.jpg

    Cricket

  • Dredge

    pictures/300_Dredge.jpg

    Dredge

  • Formal

    pictures/300_Formal.jpg

    Formal

  • Graduate

    pictures/300_Graduate.jpg

    Graduate

  • HarryBoy

    pictures/300_HarryBoy.jpg

    HarryBoy

  • Latino

    pictures/300_Latino.jpg

    Latino

  • League

    pictures/300_League.jpg

    League

  • Movember

    pictures/300_Movember.jpg

    Movember

  • NewBoat

    pictures/300_NewBoat.jpg

    NewBoat

  • Outing

    pictures/300_Outing.jpg

    Outing

  • Oyster

    pictures/300_Oyster.jpg

    Oyster

  • PBbook

    pictures/300_PBbook.jpg

    PBbook

  • Refusal

    pictures/300_Refusal.jpg

    Refusal

  • SeaLevel

    pictures/300_SeaLevel.jpg

    SeaLevel

  • Village

    pictures/300_Village.jpg

    Village

  • Voluntee

    pictures/300_Voluntee.jpg

    Voluntee

  • PBbook2

    pictures/300_PBbook2.jpg

    PBbook2



Search this website

What's On
.
<April 2014>
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
303112345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930123
45678910
(Click for details)

Contribute!

Skip Navigation Links.
  Copyright © 2009 Peninsula Community Access Newspaper Inc