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Sunday, 20 January 2013

Camp Week in the Late Forties

 
I wonder what they would say today, the health and safety guys and gals would probably have a fit, and the local constabulary would have a field day running out of their little forms summoning all our mums and dads to court. Then there are the child welfare people, oh dear . . . . . panic! ! !
I don’t know about vehicles, never been one to differentiate one from another, mind you, I couldn’t do without one; I’d have to walk or catch the bus. Where I live there is a bus every twelve hours and they stop running at ten o’clock. . .(think about that one as I carry on), but it is the truth. The funny thing is if I had a bus pass I can only use it after nine o’clock in the morning and before five in the evening, the only bus that stops at the top of the road arrives at eight forty five so I would have to pay. Being a pensioner on a flat pension I would have to give up eating or something even more important because it is cheaper to get a taxi if you share it with someone!
Anyway look at the picture, a couple of dozen young lads sitting on their kit bags on the back of a lorry ready for a journey to their yearly camp at Seasalter from St Marks Church in Pysons road. I was seven, and I had a broken arm in a sling, that’s before we started off on a journey all the way along the Thanet Way, no seat belts, actually no seats. The wind in our hair singing all the way, great fun, we all had the time of our young lives. Mind you, I don’t think that lorry would exceed 30mph flat out, and I vaguely remember having to stop to let a heard of cows cross the road presumably for milking.
Each night we had a bonfire that lit up the night sky and probably could be seen back in Ramsgate. We all had a knife, some small, some of the bigger boys had big ones that we were taught how to sharpen, this was essential because the stick that was used to skew the potatoes that had to be cooked in the embers of the bonfire had to have a point, sharpened of course with those precious knives.
No one that I can remember was ever stupid enough to use them only for the purpose of wood craft, when we went fishing how on earth could you gut your catch and cook it if you didn’t have a knife. There was rough and tumbles and disagreements, we were boys, but I’m sure the thought would never enter our heads to pull a knife in anger; you used your fists to clout someone, and there was plenty of that as you can imagine.
Thanks for dropping by.
 

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