Andrew’s school has started a new tradition for the Grade 5 ‘graduation’ trip and I was thrilled to be allowed to tag along. The classes went to an outdoor centre and summer camp facility about 40 minutes north of where we live. Andrew signed up for the Vertical Playpen and Outdoor Survival Skills and he rocked at both. Andrew chose the route on the right-hand side of the Vertical Playpen because of the top element – this looked the most difficult to him and he’s always up for a challenge! (I took this picture after the bottom rope ladders had been removed.)

There were nine kids in the group – six girls and three boys, so Andrew chose to climb alone and went last. Some of the girls didn’t get past the rope ladder at the bottom, some made it to the top but it took quite a long time (close to ten minutes) with a lot of screaming and drama. The two boys who went before Andrew made it look easy and were up in a much shorter time than the girls (about 4-5 minutes). Then it was Andrew’s turn…

Andrew’s time? Under two minutes! I didn’t time him while he was climbing, but looking at the times on the camera when the pictures were taken it was less than two minutes! He scurried up that thing like he’d been doing it for years. He didn’t wiggle, wobble or hesitate once which just proves what I’ve said about him since he learned to walk – he’s part monkey, part kangaroo and only a tiny bit little boy.

Andrew has been discouraged at school lately because at recess his friends want to play soccer and that’s not his favourite sport and he’s not great at it (neither was Derwyn so it’s genetic for Andrew – poor kid…) So, for him to whip the butts of two soccer playing friends felt great for him (and did his mama’s heart good, too!)

Stay tuned for part two: Outdoor Survival Skills