| || || || || || May - Aug 2006 Quarterly Troop Magazine |
Mabukuwene Nature Reserve
Fridays 19:00 - 21:00 hrs
Norman's Email address
With thanks to:- Editor, typist, distributor - Leon Wuyts
UNDER THE PSEUDOLACHNOSTYLIS MAPROUNEIFOLIA
A special June edition of Pioneer Trail
was published in tribute to Father Odilo
Weeger CMM, who passed away on the
8th of June 2006, in Bulawayo. In
publishing this special edition, I would like
to thank Patrol Leader Leon Wuyts, editor
of our magazine, for collecting the
material, and to those who so willingly
contributed. The tribute is not intended to
be a comprehensive record of Fatherís life
work, but rather recognition of his wideranging
interests in serving God and his
fellow man. Father Odilo will long be
remembered as a source of inspiration
and encouragement to all. Mr John
Sullivan, author of Fatherís biography,
"The Cross and the Eagle", is inviting
anyone who would like to write of their
memories of Father Odilo to please
contact him at Sullivanís Engineering,
Bulawayo, or on the following e-mail
addresses: email@example.com or
Our Troop programme of activities since
April has not run according to plan. The
monthly hike for May was deliberately
cancelled, when the Chimanimani
Expedition & Hike became a reality at the
end of April. The June hike was also
cancelled owing to midyear school
examinations being held the whole week
before and after the scheduled hike
weekend. A virulent strain of influenza in
Bulawayo affected our Scouts over an extended period of three months, resulting in reduced
numbers attending Friday evening meetings. Then, to top it all, I had to work on the weekend that
the Parentís Camp was to have been held, so that was cancelled. The Provincial William Arnold
Carnegie Assegai Competition was also postponed, and will now be held in September. All in all,
a very fragmented programme.
A letter complimenting the Troop for their assistance was received after one hundred and seventy
Rotarians, who were attending a District Conference in Bulawayo, descended on Gordon Park for
a social evening. Our Scouts thoroughly enjoyed their weekend in hosting the Rotarians. I would
like to thank the Scouts who were able to come out to the Park for a job well done, not only for
their enthusiasm in setting up the braai, but for their positive image of Scouting, in their manners,
dress and joviality. A different and exciting activity in the life of our Troop.
The Troop was involved in a second good turn, when five members assisted with a mountain bike
challenge rally held at the Bulawayo Country Club on Saturday the 15th of July. Again, my thanks
to those Scouts for helping out.
The Troop took second place in the Colin Turner Memorial Pioneering Competition that was held
on the 26th - 28th of May. The competition was wide ranging in projects, bases and initiative uses
of pioneering skills. Representing our troop was Patrol Leader Leon Wuyts, Dylan Sandwith,
Beloved Father Odilo.
and Martin and Peter
Daly. In gaining 1683 out
of a possible 2500 points
and only 22 points behind
the winners, I was very
pleased, as the majority
of the Patrol had been in
Scouting less than a year.
We held our sausage
sizzle for this term at our
Mabukuwene. Our guests
were Martin Sanderson
and Barry Duplock, two of
our "silent" supporters
who help make our
Scouting so lively. Also
joining us at the braai was
Rob McKenzie, who,
because of the fuel shortage and price, usually waits in his car whilst the meeting is in progress.
As it was a social evening for the Scouts, they organized their own games in between cooking
their dinner. It was a really happy and relaxed evening.
am very pleased by the number of
our Scouts who now spend their
weekends out at Gordon Park. Our
programme of activities there range
from maintenance work at the camp,
to learning and practicing Scouting
skills. Then there is the social aspect,
the cooking of their meals and gaining
those all-important camp nights for
their progress awards. Patrol Leader
Leon Wuyts has been coming out
since he joined Scouting, and at the
monthly church service on the 14th of
May, he was invested into the Gordon
Park Crew. His investiture has
sparked an interest in the others, who
are now working with renewed vigour
to gain their Advanced Scout Badge,
one of the requirements for entry into
the Crew. Congratulations, Leon, on
your investiture, and my thanks to all parents in encouraging your sons to utilize Gordon Park.
And now, until the next time, itís back to my hammock beneath my favourite Pseudolachnostylis
Maprouneifolia with a floppy hat pulled over my eyes as I dream of what I need to write and ask
Santa Claus for this year.
Colin Turner Memorial Pioneering Competition
On the Friday afternoon before the competition, Leon, Chris, Peter, Martin and me met at Christ
The King Church, and Norm took us out to Gordon Park, where we set up our camp at the Silver
Boar Campsites. We unpacked our stuff, and while Mart, Pete and I were collecting gum poles,
Leon and Chris went down to Headquarters to collect ropes and lanterns. Leon and I collected
some firewood while Chris and Pete made an altar fire. Then Mart and I set up our tent, and Pete
and Chris set up their own tents. After that we fought about where the bags were to go, finally we
decided to put them in the bigger tent: ours. After that we began work on our gate and a table,
while Chris collected mud for the altar fire.
26th - 28th May 2006
During that, the other Troops arrived slowly, and began to set up their camps.
On the second day we had a slow start. We were the last to wake up, but worked faster than
most of the other troops. At about 8 oíclock there was Opening Parade, in uniform, where Norm,
who was running the competition, told us what to build. He then asked to see all the PLís, while
the rest of us had to change into camp kit and start on our projects.
While Norm was talking to the PLís, Chris and Pete improved their altar fire and kitchen. Martin
and I finished the table, and started on the chair we had to make. When Leon got back, Peter and
him started on the gateway. Chris and Martin built the bed, which Chris and Pete slept on that
During campfire that night, we took the chair
down with us, which Leon sat on the whole
time. It took the fire lighters about 10
minutes to light the fire. Then they chose
each Troop, one by one, to come up and
give a short skit. After that, Norman wanted
to inspect the chairs, and sat on each one.
On the last one, one of the other guys was
holding it up, and when he let go, the chair
The next morning, we had to wake up early
for inspection: trying to clean up all the
mess some of us had made the day before
- hard work! Then we had to clean up the
tents, sorting out all our stuff into neat piles.
Chris and Pete made their kitchen look a bit
better, while Martin cleaned up the rest of the area. Leon and I made a knotting board, which we
had to hand in during inspection.
After inspection, we changed out of our uniform and worked on our site even more for closing
inspection. After inspection, we had a morning parade, followed by a Scoutsí Own at the
campfire. Then we had some more tests: different bases where we had to do knots, splices,
whippings and machines. Then we made a Scout trestle, and had it inspected. After it was
inspected, we raced it across the training ground, and luckily ours didnít break into pieces. This
was followed by a knotting relay, where we won points by tying a whole bunch of knots correctly.
After all that excitement, we had lunch, followed shortly after by the final Closing Parade.
Unfortunately, we had not won, but had come a close second place. We were all pleased
however, and we had all enjoyed the competition. We stayed in uniform for closing inspection and
the final marking of our campsites. We spent the whole afternoon cleaning up our campsite,
making sure it looked the way we found it. Then Norm came with the trailer, we piled all our stuff
in it, and went down to Headquarters.
At Headquarters, we finished what little food we had left, and waited for the other Troops to leave
so that Norm could lock up the Park. When they finally left, Norm took us back to town and
dropped us off at Christ The King where our parentís were waiting.
2nd - 3rd June 2006
First of all we all went to Maleme, then we made a hot fire
and cooked our wonderful dinner. And then we all sat round
the fire eating corn curls. We then got our beds ready, and
then went to bed; me and my brother Pete slept in the trailer.
Everyone else slept on the floor! We all woke up, freezing
cold, in the morning and made a fire again, and then made
our breakfast and set off on our hike.
While we were on the hike I saw a warthog hole and lots of
big bush pig holes right in the middle of the road. And then
we climbed up Mt Inungu, stayed there for a while,
wandering around and looking at the Cross. Then we ran all
the way down again. As we all reached the bottom, Norm
went back to the Landie at Maleme, while we carried on to
On the way to Rhodeís Grave, I saw a dead civet that had been hit by a car. When we got to
Rhodeís Grave, we had a break and Leon took a picture of us all. Then Norm came and picked
us up, and then took us to a kopje close to Rhodeís Grave, which we climbed and saw big holes
in the rock, called Swallow Holes.
Then, while we were headed for GP, we saw a heard of
wildebeest. When we got back to the Park, we made a
fire and had lunch. After lunch Scott and me climbed all
the way through Piglets cave and sat on the top of the
very top rock, looking down at all the guys below us.
Then we climbed all the way down again.
Then me, Peter and Martin made our beds in the rafters
of the outdoor kitchen. Then we all helped by doing
some work to help Norm, then we finished off making
our beds. Then we went with Norm in the Landie to
check the water tanks, we came back, and I wrote this
story of my hike, the second one Iíve ever done.
Our First Solitary Hike
Leon, Dylan Martin and I started our hike by being dropped off on the side of the main road in the
National Park, and we hiked a little bit east to Rowallan Park, where we set up camp and slept for
4th - 5th August 2006
We woke up the next morning at about 6. The sun had already risen. We ate breakfast and
packed up, before starting to hike at around 7:15. While we were walking, we were looking
around for any game, but didnít see any. We walked along a path, passing and going over some
dwalas, looking at the map every now and then until we reached Gwangwazila, where we had a
quick rest admiring the view of the land in front of us.
After that we continued to Gali where we had lunch and rested for about 15 minutes, before we
started to hike back to GP. Martin and
Dylan started before us, so they ended up
going a different way to us, so we tracked
them to Shumba Shaba, where we lost
track of them, and so we waited for them
half way down the mountain for about 5
minutes until we decided to wait for them
at the bottom of the mountain.
When we got to the bottom, we waited for
a while before we headed on to the Park,
which we reached about 2 oíclock in the
afternoon. Norm congratulated us on our
first hike without him.
Mr Rossís Letter - Rotary Weekend
8th May 2006
RE - Rotary Conference - Gordon Park
A very special thanks to you, your Scouts and Adam for a job superbly well done and for making
the Rotary Conference Braai and Get Together at Gordon Park an outstanding success. Many of
the visiting Rotarians expressed the view, to me, that it was the highlight of the Rotary
wonder if any of the visiting Rotarians appreciated how much work went into the setting up and
preparation at Gordon Park.
know that for the past month you have been cutting the long grass on the parade grounds, on
the roads and around the buildings with the old hand pushed grass-mower - no wonder the
Scouts are so tough.
Your Scout crew were outstanding - getting all the equipment, tables, chairs, liquor bar, benches,
rubbish drums, electric lights, braai drums, washing tanks, setting up the projector screen and
cutting and collecting firewood.
noticed that all the equipment, heavy as it was, had to be brought on site using the small hand
pulled two-wheeled trolley.
Thanks for making sure that there was water on tap on the parade square and that the Gordon
Parkís diesel powered generator was available and that there was also electric power on the
The Scout Cooking Team under the supervision of John Sullivan did a superb job; we originally
planned to cater for about 110 and ended up providing for over 170 people.
Thanks again to your crew, the "clean up" on Saturday went off well and hopefully we left the
Park in the same excellent condition that we found it. Perhaps Rotary with its International
contacts could investigate the possibility of donating a small tractor to do the grass cutting and
hauling for Gordon Park - I would be happy to co-ordinate this donation.
Thanks again for a job well done.
Some Words of Wisdom
A long-standing friend of both the Troop and Norm, a "silent supporter", a few years ago
presented the following speech to the CBC Speech Night. His words of wisdom apply still more
today, and so with his kind permission, weíve reproduced his whole speech below. It may be
longer than expected, but it holds a great many gems for both the young and old of todayís world.
Master of Ceremonies, Dave Thomson; Chairman of the Board, Jonathan Rowland;
Headmaster, Dickie Peters; Honoured Guests; Staff; Parents and Pupils
When Mr Peters first approached me about a month ago to talk at this occasion, my first reaction
was one of great honour to be given this opportunity, followed by "heck, why me, what have I
done to deserve this". What have I, with no (well not many) grey hairs got to offer and who am I
to give inspiration? They must really be scraping the bottom of the barrel (I still believe this to be
got to thinking. Could it have been my outstanding academic achievements at school !?
Probably not - I only just scraped through A levels after a lot of hard graft. Could it be my
outstanding sporting achievements? - unlikely yet again. I wasnít going to bore you with any
school experiences, but I feel I must mention my vast first team rugby career that lasted for, let
me see, about 36 seconds! I generally played second team rugby (but I guess itís the same
today, the second team got to play all the good matches as we never needed to use our first team
to play against lesser teams like Falcon, Plumtree and St. Georgeís). Anyway, I was one of the
few prefects that didnít play first team rugby and I desperately wanted to - I mean the girls donít
understand the concept of 2nd team players. On one occasion, I was given this chance. Playing
against Plumtree who had this mean looking winger - this guy was about 7 foot tall and at least
27 years old, and was feared by all. I figured if I could drop this guy, my place in the team would
be secured. The whistle went, the winger almost immediately got the ball, the majority of our
team scattered but I took my chance and stood my ground. Thinking back Iím not sure how
graceful or even how effective my tackle was. But when I woke up sometime later I had 7 painful
stitches in my head.
Then I got to thinking, hang on, Iím really quite a rare species in that I am still one of the
diminishing group of old boys from my year who, probably for reasons less known to us, still live
in Zimbabwe and in particular, Bulawayo. Yes, I am a CBC old boy, I am a Zimbabwean, I love
and am successful in my job and Iím proud of what I am and what I have done. I can handle what
is thrown in my way and I can make a difference. Iíve been very fortunate in that Iíve probably
learnt more and gained more experience here, than I would have in any other country in the
Maybe THAT is what I have to offer and share with you tonight.
am one of those mad buggers who one can see on a regular basis, normally in the mid day heat
or ridiculously early hours of the morning pounding the tarmac and as my friends say "busy
chasing nothing" (this is often when you guys are on your way home from the Brass or Ivy
League after which you tell your parents that you spent the whole night standing around chatting
and drinking copious amounts of coke). For some reason I like marathon running but donít
profess to being very good at it. In reality I am probably just a jogger. I started this madness soon
after leaving school and in the past 16 years have completed numerous marathons of different
distances including five 90km Comrades marathons in Durban as well as various other
donít intend boring you with the details of running - the training, hydration, diets, carbo loading,
physiotherapy, the pain, drips and how many times I vomited, But I have learnt a great number of
lessons from running which I have used and which I think are very applicable in everyday life..
Whether we are athletic or not in the context of life we are all marathon runners. We have all
completed plenty of marathons and have the various certificates and medals to show for our
achievements. We are all running various marathons right now and have plenty more to run in
the future. Our lives as a whole are like a marathon - we are all in the same race but are at
different stages of it. The life marathon is a slightly different race in that we all start at the same
place and have all got to cross the same finish line. However, to get from the start to the finish we
can choose whichever route we want and to some degree how long we would like to take. We
can take the direct, probably the more boring route and see little on our way or we can take the
more interesting scenic route. Our performance is measured more by what we see, experience
and learn along the road, with the emphasis on making the most of the race and enjoying it. In
the "life marathon" the old geysers (one only has to look around me to see them) are much further
down the road than some of us. They have learnt more than I have and hence have become
much better runners than I am. Most of us are still in the middle somewhere, frantically learning
as we go and trying to make the right decisions along the way.
In the life marathon many of you school guys are still in the early stages. If you look back on your
marathon so far you may find that :
Maybe, you started out too quickly at a pace which is not sustainable.
Maybe you are actually one of those freaks who will sustain the pace and win the race.
you took a few wrong turns and are still looking for the right course. Maybe you are still lost.
Maybe you had to respond to a call of nature and stop to look for a porta loo. Maybe it was just a
wee leak which didnít cost much time, maybe it was a number 2 which did.
Maybe you are on the wrong diet,
Maybe you overslept and started late,
Maybe the person you wanted to run with is holding you up or maybe its visa versa.
Maybe you feel sick or simply donít like running, maybe you are coming last.
Maybe you just want to give up and stop.
Weíve all been there, but guess what, IN THE LIFE MARATHON YOU CAN NEVER GIVE UP.
Maybe youíve got to slow down, maybe take on some fluid, maybe ask for help or maybe have a
rest. Maybe rethink your race plan.
Sometimes with endurance events itís better to start slowly at the back because one finds that
often these are the people who come through strongly and pass you before the end.
There are so many marathons within life itself, some of your current marathons could be:-
Getting through exams or getting through school for that matter;
Choosing a career,
Overcoming a sickness or injury;
Courting or even marriage (now thatís a scary ultra not for the faint hearted);
It could be an actual sporting event;
Or, right now it is probably just getting through my boring speech.
One of the great things about running is that running is a great leveller. At the start of the race
there are all walks of life. The educated lawyers and doctors, to the less educated unemployed
and even board chairmen of certain private senior boysí schools. There are the young and old -
people you would normally associate with and people you would not be seen dead with. People
who have run that particular race or other races before and others who are total running novices.
The leveller is that we are all in it together. For the duration of the race we all have the same
goal, we are all going to hurt and all experience the same things. There is a great feeling of "I am
not alone". The other great thing is that at the end of the day when we cross the finish line we will
all be winners. Yes, only one person can cross the line first but we can all win our individual
races. This could be to set a new best time, just to finish the race, to complete the distance (or
the day after) more comfortably or to help somebody along the way. At the end we will all stand
proud of what we have done and we will have won.
There are a few basic principles and guidelines which I try, but donít always succeed, to follow
when running a marathon and I have found these useful and applicable to any goals or problems
that we may encounter in life:
1. Preparation -
Anything we want to achieve takes planning and preparation - we can only expect to take
out what we have put in. From a running perspective weíve got to put in many early
mornings and miles and miles of training schedules. Weíve got to choose the right
equipment, the right shoes.
A good example is swatting for exams. I remember in my school days as exams drew
nearer there would be much banter in the common room after a weekend. Everybody
seemed to be having so much fun but not doing any studying. Did you study? - Nah.
Then they go on and get straight Aís. I believed they were so much brighter than me that
they didnít need to work as hard. But I can tell you now that is bull. If they got out Aís
they put in Aís. I remember my Biology teacher, Mrs. Carew, always had a saying that if
your exam preparations were not in final stages by the time the jacarandas bloomed you
would fail. I see them blooming now so how do you guys stand?
2. Identifying objectives, setting targets and planning a strategy. -
The first part of strategy is to make a decision to run. I run because I enjoy it and I know
that itís good to keep fit and healthy. But I also know that if I donít target and make a
decision to compete in at least one specific race a year I will never have the commitment
to keep training and working towards it. Itís too easy to make excuses and find
something else to do.
Goal setting is something we have to learn. If you think of your school environment, your
goals are all set out by your teachers, parents and the system. Here is an assignment -
do it this way and have it completed by this date.
The funny thing is when we move out into the big world weíve got to set our own targets
in order to keep ourselves motivated and focused. Personally this is something running
taught me a great deal about.
Often in life our problems seem insurmountable. Believe me at 30 kís into a 90k run
another 60 kís seems impossible. I have found that to get through I have to break the big
problem into little chunks and just tackle one at a time. I break the 90 k run into 3 x 30 k
or 9 x 10 k runs. If we concentrate on the one in hand and not the next, the big picture
seems less intimidating. I hate to keep mentioning exams but I really hate them and they
are another prime example - study for one at a time and tackle one at a time. The other
part of strategy is to identify our weak points and work on them. We all have Achilles
heels that hinder our performance and success. From a running point of view my weak
point is my upper body strength - most grannies in retirement homes are stronger and
certainly bigger-chested than I. From a personality point of view my inability to handle
criticism is probably my biggest weakness.
The final part of strategy is to develop good support structures to help us. These may
be a partner or a parent. To be in with the wrong crowd, to train with the wrong people
will always destroy this structure.
Remember, the plan always needs to be reassessed and re-evaluated as we go along.
3. The third principle is perseverance - Never, ever give up!
Long endurance events do funny things to your body and your mind. At the end of races
Iíve seen grown men cry and plenty of woman - like hormonal bickering.! After running for
between 3 to 4 hours, we have a thing in running that we call "hitting the wall". Your legs
go dead, your muscles ache, you have a total lack of energy and often dizziness and
nausea. The medical reason for this is that until this point your body is burning up
glycogen reserves for energy. When you "hit the wall" your glycogen is all used up and
your body is now making the change to burning up fat and muscle for energy. The secret
here is to keep your mind together because it only lasts for about 30 minutes to an hour.
Before a race I try to remind myself of the wall, tell myself it will happen and try to be
prepared to get through it. I tend to almost always to forget. My friend Kieran Walsh,
probably known to many of you, is a good example of a person who can achieve through
being mentally positive - although in his case to be mentally challenged probably helps!. I
have seen him at the end of the run, bleeding from his nipples, legs and feet without even
being aware of it. He is mentally so strong that he can just focus on the finish line and not
get bogged down by anything in between.
A quick story about him: on one of his runs, he saw a tennis ball lying in the road, so he
picked it up and put it in his pocket and carried on. At the end of his session, standing
around catching his breath, one of his colleagues noticed the bulge, which had moved
around to the front a bit. "Whatís that?" he asked. "Oh", said Kieran, "its tennis ball".
"That must be painful" came the reply, "I had tennis elbow once and that was bad
In life there are many walls that we have to hit and get through, lets face it, particularly so
in Zimbabwe. Letís consider CBC for a moment. What a milestone it has reached this
year. 50 years and looking stronger and stronger with each year. One only has to look
around at the number and quality of officials, trainers (the staff) and indeed spectators.
Yes, we are all concerned about the future of our private schools but could this problem
not just be a glyco wall? Possibly CBC is out of glyco reserves but has adequate
reserves of fat and muscle to go the full distance. Could the same be true for the
economy of our country. The Glco reserves can always be replenished.
4. The fourth and final principle is to enjoy the race and to allow ourselves the chance to
celebrate our success.
How true is the common saying " Lifeís a journey enjoy the ride". I know a lot of people in
business who hate their jobs and hate what they do. What a shame. Many of them
probably hated school too. How many of our friends have left Zimbabwe because they
were unhappy, only to find that they are even more unhappy elsewhere. If they could
only look at the bright side and pick out the pluses.
In conclusion, I would like to leave a message particularly directed at those pupils who are due to
leave school in the next year or two.
Guys, you have been so very fortunate in the start of your marathon of life. Your parents have
afforded you the best training available in what I believe to be the best country you could ever
wish to compete. The platform has been set and itís now up to you.
- Set you goals and choose your direction.
- Make every decision and action count.
- Donít be scared to stand up for what you believe in or to take a stand and be counted.
- When you succeed, celebrate and enjoy - you deserve it. When you donít, learn from
your mistakes, get up and try again.
- Most importantly enjoy what you do and make the most of every opportunity. Donít have
As you move through life give thought to what marathons you want to run but make sure you run
them and run them well. Whatever you do donít give up, donít bomb out.
Have a gas and kick some serious butt !!.
Good luck to you all, weíll see you out there on the road of life (if its you that are passing me at
the time, please do it quietly and respectably).
A few more thoughts:
"I donít know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
"I believe that God put us in this jolly world to be happy and enjoy life. The real way to
get happiness is by giving out happiness to other people."
Lord Baden-Powell, 1st Baron of Gilwell
"Never speak about the good you are going to do, simply do it. Then there would be no
need to speak."
"Only one power is greater than the atomic bomb - the spirit and soul of man."
1st Bulawayo (Pioneer) Scout Troop
Troop Programme of Activities for September to December 2006
1 - 2 Monthly Hike
5 Schools open
8 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
10 Gordon Park Service: 12:00 noon
15 - 17 William Arnold Carnegie Assegai Competition: Gordon Park
22 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
29 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
30 Provincial Cook-Out Competition: Milton Junior School
6 - 7 Monthly Hike
8 Gordon Park Service: 12:00 noon
13 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
14 Scout Memorial Service for Fr Odilo Weeger: Gordon Park, 2000 hours
14 - 15 Parentís Camp: Gordon Park
20 - 22 JOTA/JOTI Camp: NUST
27 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
3 - 4 Monthly Hike
10 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
12 Gordon Park Service: 12:00 noon
17 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
24 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene (Sausage Sizzle)
25 Provincial Scout Award Ceremony
1 -2 Monthly Hike
5 Schools Close
8 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene
10 Gordon Park Service: 12:00 noon
8 - 10 National Patrolís Competition: Ruwa Park, Harare (to be advised)
15 Troop Meeting: Mabukuwene (last meeting of the year)
25 Christmas Day
Pantomime Duty Dates to be advised
Additional Activities may be added to the Programme