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Zahnada

Do you keep in touch?

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I just had a great conversation with my old Scoutmaster last night. We caught up and talked about old stories from the troop of old. Do you keep in touch with anyone from your old troop? Are there any lifelong friends you made through scouting?

 

For me, the personal side of scouting made it worthwhile to come to meetings and outings. I had some great friends there. I still keep in touch with a few of them regularly. The conversation always turns to our memories of the troop.

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This is one of the points I try to stress to new parents. They can make lifetime friends thru Scouting. I would have to say the majority of my friends today are either present or past members of our troop or troop committee. Plus these are true frinds you can count on that generally have the same values and morals as you do.

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I was just talking to my program director from last summer, yesterday. I know its only been a year, but the two of us marvelled at the friendship that we formed and have maintained, because the actual hiring process so was quick and whirlwind...neither of us would have guessed we would be get to be tight.

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As a child of the 60's I can tell you that my scoutmaster was a big part of my life then. I still smile when I see heavy equipment (he was a heavy equipment operator). From time to time we see each other. I'm amazed to watch the interaction, because I'm still striving for him to tell me that I'm doing well. That means a lot to me, even now as a professional in my 40's in the 21st century.

 

I was a scoutmaster for a troop. My boys from that troop still stop by, the youngest one just graduated college, and came to see me. Just wanted me to know.

 

I was an ASM from another troop. My boys check in with me from there too. I found out before many of my boy's parents whom they were planning on marrying. I have held little babies and noticed that the kids have their dad's features. Yeah these relationships are strong, when you let them be.

 

As for staff opportunities, or friends from one adult role to another. (For example, I'm the committee chair for the troop my son earned his Eagle in.) Those are great too.

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I do keep up with my old scoutmaster. Of course, now I call him "dad".

 

I don't do well in keeping up with my old scouting friends. I run into one every now and then, and it brings back old memories. I ran into one at Pow wow this year. He's a cubmaster. We told stories and had some great time remembering. I hope to do better at this, but always fall short.

 

I ran into some scouts at camp from my old troop. I was a founding member and one of the first Eagles. I asked them if the old fireplace is standing at the picnic shelter and if it still says "Troop 270 Eagle Project - 1981". They said it did. It made me smile.

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E-mail has really helped with keeping in touch.I'm still in contact with about 150 of the Lads that were in the troop when I was the Scoutmaster. I have about ten or so friends who were leaders of other troops at that time we E-mail and talk on the phone and have spent time visiting each other.

In 2002 I went home and OJ and I got to spend time at summer camp with the Scoutmaster who I have hero worshiped since I was was a venture scout.

Sad to say much as I admire and respect my Scoutmaster we had a falling out when I first became a Scoutmaster. He had quit Scouting to get married at 42 years old!! The troop was down and almost out when I came back. We used to meet after the troop meetings in the local pub. I started out hanging on his every word then I started to resent him trying to run the troop from a bar stool till we stopped meeting. He moved and we lost contact. The English Scout Association does have a web site where for a donation you can search for and leave messages to people from your old troop, district whatever. I hope that one day he will check it out. We haven't contacted each other in almost 25 years which make me feel bad.

When my Dad died I went home. My brother, the Priest who was/is a family friend and a couple of others along with me nipped into a pub for a quick pint. The bartender was about the size of a barn. I ordered a round of drinks and was ready to pay for them, when the bartender said "That's OK." London is a friendly town but it not known for free beer. I gave this generous Bartender a puzzled look. He smiled and said "You don't know who I am?" He was right I had no idea. He went on to say that he was one of my Cub scouts when I was an Assistant Cubmaster. 20 years had passed and he not only remembered me, he paid for the beer. Who says we don't paid!!

Eamonn

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