This week began strong with a day off, where determined to make the most of it a group of us set off on a hike to Lake Taney. Faced with muddy slopes, ladders, steep hills and pouring rain, the three hour hike actually ended pretty successfully when, soaking wet and exhausted, we found a cafe and a chocolat chaud at the top of the mountain. By the time we’d fonished our drinks and dried our clothes (or tried to), the rain had stopped, the clouds rolled back and Rosie’s back had completely given in. Life lesson #24730028: if you’re jumpy around frogs and have a bad back it doesn’t end too well. The evening ended with a lift back to camp, an emergency pharmacy trip and a well deserved movie night.
Despite the rain (and having walked in a cloud for the better part of the day), Monday was well spent and by the time Tuesday morning rolled around we were counting the days down until our next day off. We spent the next two days in raincoats again, learning to make shelters, build fires and use knives in bushcraft staff training. Let’s just say I’m very grateful I packed my beanie even if I can’t get the smell of campfire smoke out of it yet.
On Thursday I learned that staff training could consist of a 15km hike, games and a campsite lunch, which I’m not sure exists in any other job I know. Thank god the sun was out, though picking our way through muddy cow fields served as an interesting obstacle.
After a week of training that hardly felt like training at all, we decided to take it easy for once on another day off and on Friday we set off down the mountain. Though 14 people isn’t ideal to hitchhike with, we somehow all managed to make it down to Montreaux, where we spent a heavenly day eating good food, drinking goon and swimming at the pool and in Lake Geneva at Villeneuve.
That evening we packed up our rooms, ready to move 30 mins walk away to Hotel Torgon. As the camp is currently hosting 4 schools at once, the leaders are all being moved out for two weeks, and I now get woken up by Alicia kicking me in what is possibly the quaintest hotel room I’ve ever seen.
We spent Saturday waiting for schools to arrive and doing welcome tours, which shouldn’t have been as exhausting as it was but by that evening the most we could do was a quick after hours climbing session before I collapsed into bed.
This week finished with a full day of mountain biking followed by archery. As tired as this job gets, watching kids learn how to ride a bike for the first time or get a bullseye after they’ve convinced themselves they’re bad at aiming can make my entire week.
I’m leaving you with some photos from our hike on Monday to Lake Taney, and heading to the Parraquet (the local and only pub) for a well earned drink.