|Columnist Porky Cutter, like many drillers, has been active in his community. He has fond memories of his time as an assistant scout master years ago in Adel, Ga. Source: iStock|
We formed the Cub Scouts Pack No. 122. I was the assistant Cub Scout master, and Bess was a den mother and Webelos leader. All total, we had 84 scouts.
The cubs decorated a Cub Scout parade float and pulled it behind our dune buggy for the county parade.
We made an agreement with our scouts that if they earned all of that year’s merit badges we would reward them by taking them for a weekend campout at the Reed Bingham State Park. Twenty-five scouts were able to make the campout. We agreed that half of the scouts would ride in Bess’ Simca hatchback and the other half would ride in the dune buggy. Then, halfway, they would switch vehicles. Imagine 13 kids in a small car and 12 in a dune buggy … then switching. They had a ball.
During this planned campout there was a state campout at the campground. There were some 350 campers, trailers and tents set up. We set up two tents for the scouts, and Bess and I camped in our pickup camper.
Our Cub Scouts consisted of the sheriff’s son, the justice of the peace’s son, a minister’s son, the mortician’s son and the sons of several business owners. The city officials’ sons were usually the instigators.
We built a campfire. When we had hot coals we had the scouts wrap their chosen dinners in tin foil and place them over the hot coals and leave them alone for an hour. This way everyone had a self-made hot meal. After their dinner we roasted marshmallows and shared scary stories. Then about 10 p.m. we sent them to their respective tents for a good night’s rest … right!
They weren’t ready for bed yet. Bess and I watched them replace salt in the salt shaker with white sand knowing that one scout’s father, who was assisting, would be cooking a big pot of grits for breakfast the next morning. Did we interfere? Nah. The next morning the father made the grits and salted it well. Did any of the cubs want grits? Nah. The assistant probably still wonders today how the sand got in the grits.
During the evening, everyone was supposed to be in their tents, but we would see them slipping out. So, I slipped around behind the tents and waited for them. They would say “uh-oh,” and slip back to their tents. We could hear them talking through their tent walls and knew they were cooking up something.
Several scouts slipped out of their tents, so Bess and I followed them. They wandered all around the campgrounds and then went to the restroom. Bess and I were waiting when they came out. Busted! I asked the boys where they had been. They said they had to go to the restroom and I said, “It’s a long way, isn’t it?” We followed them back to their tents and could hear them talking about how we must have followed them everywhere. All in all, we all had a great time.
These kids are all adults now with children of their own. We moved from Adel some 35 years ago and lost track of most of those kids. However, when we do run into some of those Cub Scouts, they tell us that campout with us was one of the most memorable times of their younger years. It’s a favorite of ours, too.
Boy, would I like to see their sons today and tell them stories of their fathers’ shenanigans as Cub Scouts.
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