Our groups are half way through their week’s adventure in the Netherlands, and have they had an amazing few days so far! The weather has been gorgeous and our groups have been busy over the last couple of days. So without further ado, let me tell you of our antics so far!

Monday saw Staffordshire guides clog painting in the morning, which gave them a great souvenir to take back from their time at Buitenzorg. Sadly, everyone only got to paint a single clog, also the leaders got together and made possibly the first painted pair of clogs this camp has ever seen! Meanwhile, Leamington scouts were taking a geocaching challenge around the camp, handy GPSs at hand. I was very impressed by the teamwork I saw, and also the commitment of searching through the dense woodland of the camp. It had been an eventful and fun morning for both groups, but there was still a lot more fun to be had.

listening closely to the safety instructions
listening closely to the safety instructions

Everyone joined together in the afternoon to head to Amersfoort for the High Ropes assault course. For some of the scouts and guides (and myself), the height of the course was a real challenge, but the staff and fellow high-ropers were very supportive and we all came out of it with a real sense of achievement. Taking a dip in the huge outdoor swimming pool Zwembad Bosbad was also a fitting reward for their efforts, and let everybody relax with their feet near the ground.

Emily braves the high ropes
Emily braves the high ropes

After the amazing day in Amersfoort, Staffordshire Guides decided that there was no time to waste by rising early to head to Amsterdam the next day! Under the hot summer sun, they travelled by both bus and boat across the whole of the city, visiting  the Rijkmuseum, the Portuguese synagogue and eventually, after a 2 hour wait, Anne Frank’s House. The group also learnt some handy Dutch words on the train ride home, such as ‘bedankt’, ‘alstublieft’, and of course, OPAAAAAA!

Leamington Scouts also had a day of exploration, spending the morning following a notebook full of photos around Baarn. However, being scouts, the group did not stop there, taking the train to Utrecht for a day of shopping and discovery. Many of the scouts were especially impressed by the Dom Tower, an 800 year old building in the centre of the town.

So, the week so far has been one of fun, excitement and discovery, but also friendship! It’s been great watching our Venture Abroad groups singing songs and sharing campfires together, and is a good reminder, especially for an ex-scout like myself, how special the Scout movement is. Tomorrow will continue this amazing week with a canoe adventure and a trip to a theme park, so make sure you keep reading and as always, I will keep you posted on all activities going on in Buitenzorg. Cheers’n’gone!