Friday, May 28, 2010

TEKONG Camp Days 80's...more memories.

A close up view of me supervising the setting up of another structure for Obstacles on 1st Day
of a Training Camp at Tekong. Watching from behind is Alan Chng ( NTU PE lecturer today ). The campers were organised into groups with names like Shark, Piranha, Barracuda, Manta etc..

This memorable snapshot showed the groups we were teaching canoeing to.
The life jackets of those times were bulky and much heavier than today's versions.

Photo: L to R
Poh Kheng, Lim Ming ( Camp Commandant), Lee Foon, Ismail, unk Dicko ( Chief Instructor )

The nights in camp were never ever wasted, whether at base camp or at our field campsites
used during the overnight land and sea expeditions.
At the field campsite, the respective land and sea groups were expected to arrive by nightfall..
set up camp for their own watch, prepare dinner, wash up, prepare for the next day's changeover activity from land to sea and vice-versa.
This particular photo show that although C Kunalan ( once the fastest man in S'pore for the 100 metre ) can outsprint anyone, he was having some difficulty building up our cooking fire. And so I was right behind him fanning the smoke away from him.
The Camp staff ( instructors ) set a good example by always cooking their own meals.
Kunalan had also served as Camp Commandant before.

When I look back fondly at my camping days spent with so many different groups
of people, and in so many different campsites...I cherish most the moments of simplicity, warmth, camaraderie and friendship as in this photo above. We had no table nor chairs. Don't need them anyway! Just spread a good old poncho on the ground and everything's set.
At times, I just use 2 twigs which I had picked to be my chopsticks.
Often, a few of us camp staff just slept in the open ( no tent set up) under the starry sky...with a small campfire close by to provide sufficient warmth in the cold of the night.


Thimbuktu said...

Well done, Unk Dicko. Your training camps have trained many youngsters over the years with leadership skills, discipline and developed a rugged society. Nice blog about campdays in the 1980s. Cheers!

unk Dicko said...

Thanks James. Nothing like camping and the outdoors to develop and hone the leadership skills of our teachers.
Seriously, many of our campers rose to very senior positions in later years...becoming Principals, Directors, professors, lecturers and so on. Most of them are still in service today and I know in my heart that none of them has forgotten the wonderful experience and lessons learnt at Tekong.