When I was a Brownie, about one hundred years ago, we were allowed a little bit of fun as we learned to bake cakes, polish shoes and play a musical instrument. Only a little mind, if you had the misfortune to be in our Pack. I still have fond memories of my time as a Brownie, so encouraged both of my girls to join. Rhiannon left before she was ten and didn't want to be a Guide. Ciara however is now a Guide and is quite active in the Guiding movement. She's managed to get me involved too and as my friends Angela (recently Hoppy) and Louise are the Leaders of the Pack Ciara helps with, that's the Pack I help with too. I was invited to accompany them on Pack Holiday this weekend and agreed to go along, with a hint of trepidation.
On the whole, we had a good weekend. The bits I was dreading weren't so bad, the bits I wasn't prepared for and never imagined would happen were appalling. When did Brownies become so mischievous? Mischievous to the point of being vandals.
Within an hour of arriving, water was pouring through the ceiling of the dining room. I sped upstairs to find the handwash basin in one of the ensuite shower rooms had toilet paper stuffed into the plug hole and overflow and the taps turned on full. Water was flowing over the edge of the basin, onto the floor, soaking through the carpet, through the floorboards and through the ceiling. Why? Why would a Brownie even think to do such a thing? It turned out it was probably a group of three Brownies that were in the group of seven from another Pack invited to join us. One of the Three Musketeers then became very sick, her mother was called and she was taken home. Handy. But then fingers were pointed and blame laid and she became the scapegoat.
In the event, we could not name the suspects, because we had no proof, so in the end we decided that when the time came for the rest of us to go home, all parents would be gathered and the situation explained. The two remaining suspects must have told their parents their versions and whilst one pair were distinctly unhappy, the other mum was extremely calm and reasonable, and in private, they all agreed to contact the third parent and club together to cover the cost of the damage, should they be required to do so.
An unfortunate start to what was a lovely(ish) weekend, even though it did leave a dark cloud hanging over us. There were a few minor injuries, sleepwalking, a nose bleed and I had a major and extremely inconvenient migraine, but there were no other major incidents and then we all went home.
I was shattered and needed a glass of wine. Or three. Then I needed my bed.
Today, I really appreciated the peace and quiet.