By: Blonde Two

Today, Blonde One and I had the pleasure of spending some time with some complete navigation newbies.  They had the maps out for the first time and were pouring over them, sandwiches in hand, trying to figure out routes for their Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Expeditions.

It was lovely to see their eagerness and enthusiasm.  Lovely too to be able to dive back into teaching the basics.  There is nothing like teaching someone something to help you to make sure that you understand it yourself.  Sometimes, it is just nice to realise that you do know stuff – especially if you are a Blonde and get things wrong as often as I do.

We did grid references and eventually got the corridor before the stairs.  We examined coloured lines and translated their meanings – including sorting out the difference between a railway line and a path (could have been nasty).  We learnt not to walk on pink or blue roads and that following those wiggly blue roads would require a boat not walking boots.

We found the campsite and calculated how far we thought we would walk in the allocated three hours travelling time.  Then we looked at the rather close contour lines and decided to cut the distance back a bit (bitter experience from last year).  In the end, we had a feasible first day planned and a new route (and many contour lines) for Blonde One and I to test out.  They did really well and given time would probably have not needed me at all.

A very small girl with a large pot of pasta asked if her rucksack would be heavy and I tried to gauge my answer carefully.  It would have been cruel at this point to tell her that it would probably weigh more than her – an exaggeration I know but it will be almost the same volume.  Hopefully she will keep eating the pasta between now and then.

They seemed to be a great bunch, full of enthusiasm and humour so I suspect that Blonde One and I will be in for two rather fun weekends with them later on this year.  Looking forward to it …