On the 12th September 2013 I set off for a weekend of fun in London. This wasn't a normal weekend in London though, I was going to be camping, and no I didn't know London had campsites either! You may wonder why I didn't check into a hotel so I could have a proper weekend city break, well that’s because it was a Scout Network event (and I am a poor student). Scout Network is a section of scouting in the UK for 18 – 25 year olds, and this weekend we were embarking on an Inter-Network Monopoly Run. This involved competing against other Network groups in the UK to visit every point on the Monopoly Run in the quickest time. There were also several challenges to complete for bonus points which we open in interpretation so I was looking forward to putting some creativity into that!
This was the day my friend, and fellow network member, Tom and I left for London. Living on the Isle of Man meant that the first leg of our journey was by boat something that us Islanders are used to but it seemed to impress the other teams. Getting a boat or the plane is the start of every holiday for me even for a simple trip to London, yet it always makes me very excited. It feels like I am going against nature, like the water was put there to keep me on the Island and yet I am defeating that. Ok, well perhaps I am not actually sailing the boat or flying the plane but there is something about being encased in a metal box for a few hours that makes me very excited for some strange reason.
Once we had conquered barrier of water and arrived in Liverpool we made our way to the station and got there with 50 minutes to spare. What do Network do when they have time to spare you may ask? Go to the pub of course, although this time we were only on the soft drinks. On the train we meet a lovely American lady who had bought an oyster card but barely used it and couldn't be bothered getting her money back so thanks to her and her daughter’s kindness Tom and I saved a lot of money on the tube. (An Oyster card is something you can use to pay for journeys on public transport in London).
Seven hours after we set off we finally reached the part of London we were staying in. The whole journey we kept saying at the next opportunity we would go to a shop and buy some food, in fact we deliberately got to the ferry terminal early to do just that, but we kept putting it off. By the time we got off the tube we were having to drag ourselves along we were so hungry. It was 10:30pm but we expected, this being London, there to be a shop open but after 20 minutes of wandering the streets all we could find was a McDonald's so that would have to do and we would think about breakfast when it came to it.
We finally made it to the campsite at 11:30pm and it started to chuck it down with rain, just in time for us to put our tents up! After getting very wet putting up the tents we finally could go to bed, ready to explore London the next day before the rest of the team arrived and the competition started the following evening. The highlight of that moment was when I remembered I had packed a proper full blown pillow, which is a massive luxury when camping in Scouts!
Well that was the first day of my London adventures, I hope you enjoyed it, this trip was four days long so as you can probably guess there will be four parts. The happenings of day 2 will be posted tomorrow when you can find out what ridiculous things we got up to, so watch out for that. I will also be uploading a video or too about the trip on my YouTube channel in the next few weeks so click below to subscribe to my channel to be told when that is uploaded:
See you tomorrow