Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Reunion of Troop 50

     It's really not my story to tell, however, I know my wife and she doesn't realize how good of a writer she is, so she is highly unlikely to tell this story, and you know I hate to let a good story go to waste.....

The girls that attended
     Last weekend we hosted a reunion of my wife's former G*rl Sc*ut Troop at our home (I'm editing so that this blog site doesn't show up on a search as it isn't always appropriate for younger kids).  Ten years ago they had put together a time capsule and promised to get back together to open it during the 100th anniversary of the organization, and they did.  My wife was one of the original leaders and shortly thereafter, our family friend Helen, joined as her co-leader and they, together, were able to take 7 girls to their senior year in high school all while remaining active in the organization.  The Troop had it's ebbs and flows of membership, reaching a high of 18 and a low of 6, but I suspect each and every member of that Troop, regardless of the duration of the time spent there, came away with fond memories of the experience.  I played no part in the Troop, official or unofficial, but as an outside observer, it was easy to tell how special this group was. I was able to accompany them on a trip to NYC once, and that is a memory that I will always cherish. The Troop was
Boston Trip
more traditional in the beginning earning badges and ranks, but it eventually moved to more of an activity focused group.  That's not to say that they didn't advance, because they did, and in fact the membership had one Gold recipient, two Silvers, and many Bronzes. They seemed most comfortable though in the more relaxed meeting sessions, and they worked on organizing many trips and camps.  Aside from the NYC trip they were also able to tour Washington D.C, Boston MA, and I don't recall them ever missing a year of summer camp.  I'd hear the camp stories from them each year for weeks afterwards and they were always told with great enthusiasm and mirth.  As with all great groups, the leadership team can take some credit here, and I saw how well the 2 leaders balanced each other out. As previously stated, I felt the Troop helped to mold some exceptional young women and I suspect I enjoyed the reunion as much as they did.

     The Time Capsule was part of each girl's Bronze project and every girl was asked to donate something that was important to them or something that was indicative of the time period.  They were also asked to do a short biography or note on what they were donating.  After they all had donated, the capsule was sealed,
The Time Capsule
and rather than buried, it was  hidden in our attic until 10 years had passed (FYI, it's easy to hide stuff in our attic for ten years, I'm sure we do it on accident all the time) .  Some girls had enclosed parts of their uniforms, like skorts, banners or swap hats.  Others put in beanie babies or other precious mementos.  Each wrote a short note, except for Ali, who waxed philosophic ad nauseum on how she would be sure to grow up to be a farmer and that she could not imagine her life being complete without her living on the farm.  It got a lot of laughs considering she had just completed her Senior year at Syracuse University and spent some time this summer in Cannes France (It was a literal case of "How are you going to keep them down on the farm, after they have seen gay Paree?" )  Each girl, in turn, opened her item and read the short passage that she had written 10 years ago.  Few could see themselves then as they were now, especially Kilee the vegan
Some of the old gear
vegetarian.  Some tried on their old uniforms and the entertainment value in that was unparalleled.  As each item was opened, they kick-started memories of that time period in general and then of the activities of the Troop in particular.  I knew, from past experience, that the day wouldn't end without some of their favorite camp fire songs and stories coming out.  I'm sure I overheard "Priscilla", and "I don't want to go to G.S. Camp" along with their story of their friend "Hermie" who ate everything and got progressively larger until he burped (a direct rip-off of a joke I used to tell in 3rd grade at St. Mary's).  The morning quickly turned to afternoon and the quiche and salads that were served for brunch got a second wave of lookers as the time progressed.  My wife had done a fantastic job on the food and Helen's hummus dip and pita bread was a perfect accompanyment.
Finally one of the girls had to leave and soon after the others departed
And after the clean up all that remained was the smile on my wife's face
Her girls had come home.

Beanie Baby

     I hope I've told this tale well, but as I had said, it's not my story to tell really. I'm hoping it will draw comments from the girls did attend and even from those who couldn't or who had lost touch (if they find this blog.)  They say you can't go home again, but I think it can be done. The trick is to make "home" a comfortable place, to foster a sense of well being, camaraderie and acceptance, to truly care for each other, and yes, to make sure you serve quiche. 

Summer camp


Anonymous said...

Some really interesting points you have written. Aided me a lot, just what I was looking for : D.

cdyarger said...

Thank you for writing this! I could not have said it all better. Brought me to tears. I love my girls and I was so happy to see them all - and all doing so well! I have been able to keep in touch with most of them, including my dear friend Helen! I look forward to the next reunion!