Ain’t no mountain high enough

28 12 2011

When I was about 8 years old, my friend asked me if I’d care to join him at Cub Scouts. It was the start of a lifelong relationship with scouting in both the UK and Canada. It has taught me many things  – several of them about myself. When I got to scouts (11-14 years), we started to do much more active things – hiking, camping and the like. Our leader wasn’t a bad person. Au contraire, he taught us many skills and opened up many opportunities for us. He was however a product of his own experiences. He was ex-army and super fit, regularly taking part in long distance challenge runs, such as the 14 threes in Wales. One of my mates has Muscular Dystrophy. He’s always been an academic type, but it was only as we got older and moved up to Venture scouts (around 15 years old) that I became aware that he’d been implicitly excluded from all our more adventurous outdoor activities. Kids are thick.

At 15 though, we woke up, and said “why not?” Where does it say that just because you’re in a wheelchair, you can’t go backpacking or go to the top of a hill to camp? No – we couldn’t find anywhere either. So… three of us plus our mutual friend with the wheels went camping for a couple of nights. Up a hill. Over stiles and fences. Not exactly a huge hill, but it felt like it when lifting a wheelchair and our mate. We got a few looks, I can tell you!

I think we all learned something though.

Do or do not. There is no try – Yoda.

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16 04 2013
Don’t ever tell me “you can’t”. | Quieter Elephant

[…] It reminded me of my old school friend who has the same condition. I previously blogged about his adventures here. […]

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