Monday, 27 September 2010

Bring a mate week

Hello hello.

This week we were visited by our nearest and dearest - 'Bring a mate week' was a chance for our friends and families to come and visit Camas for the week and see what we've really been getting up to here.

It was a particularly fun-filled week. Everybody got on well together so we were like one strange extended family. There was lots more berry-picking. Josef's friend Calle visited all the way from Sweden to star in the Kayaking competition: two capsizes in one minute. We camped out in the rain and listened to stories around the campfire, we walked backwards off a wall and three people managed to climb back to the top.

Aside from all the activities we got on with keeping Camas in working order. During the mornings we fixed the place up a little, built ourselves a new bench out of scraps and Darragh took his dad along to collect some cow poo for the cob oven. Happy days.

The week finished off with the Camas end of season party, a shindig to celebrate the great season we've had. We prepared a bountiful banquet which was eaten in a beautifully furbished Artroom. Then we had a performance ceilidh around the downstairs stove and finished the night off with a bout of sock-wrestling. Rob and Josef are still caught in a stale-mate.

Thanks to all our guests and visitors for the week and party. If you couldn't make either this year make sure you come along for the next one. It was a blast.

Friday, 24 September 2010

A berry good week

This was a week led by Kathy Galloway called exploring creation. We had a group of lovely people from all over the world and with lots of different experiences. We went blackberry picking in the pouring rain while others enjoyed tea in the polytunnel, a bit of a sore point for some, as well as digging spuds for the tea. This was also a week of trees and their fruit, the plum tree (which has been hidden away until recently) gave us some beautiful plums which we were made into an amazing dessert. The blackthorn produced sloes which we will also find good use for.

We went on a few day trips, to Ardalanish where Aeneas told us the story of the how they became organic weavers and why he thinks his hebredian sheep look handsome and happy and how he talks to ravens! We also went to the tidal island of Erraid and, after lunch and selkie stories at the lighthouse observatory, walked to the seal colony to see if there were any sealskins on the shore.

Our last night was filled with good food, songs, comedy, and wonderful poems about Buddhas and wooden spoons warriors!

Thanks from the Camas staff to all our guests for a really enjoyable week.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

High Five, Scuba Dive!

This week Camas was visited by one of our longest running groups: Abercorn school from Glasgow.
It was a week of high fives (or scuba dives if you weren't quick enough), arm wrestling, cook offs and made you looks.

Everybody had a great time, except Rob who lost out on the Camas Cook Off and was forced to wear a Beard of Shame. Two of the group performed at the Iona Ceilidh and almost everybody had a dance, even though it meant someone lost a bet and now has double work in Spanish.

All in all it was an excellent week and we were sad to see the group leave, but extra sad this week as our three of our volunteers (Rosie, Ros and Jeayeun) left at the same time. Those of you had the pleasure of meeting them will know that they're sorely missed.

Next week we have a group ran by one of the Iona Community's former leaders, Kathy Galloway, along the theme of 'Experiencing Creation'. Stay tuned for the update!

Monday, 6 September 2010

The little week that was

Last week Camas staff scattered far and wide for a well deserved break: Cally and Jy ventured further north to the Isle of Lewis and Rob to the Isle of Skye; Darragh headed over the Irish Sea to visit home; Josef, Emily and Tom went off on a jolly to England's Greenbelt Festival.

Mary, Becky, Rosie and Ros were left behind to defend Camas Bay. Luckily no pirates attacked but we did get a few special visitors.
Becky's sister Rachel came to stay with husband Richard and their wee Ruth - a trio of Rs. Ruthie was a great help in the garden and so was treated to a most luxurious wheelbarrow ride.

Rosie and Ros dedicated themselves to some serious track work. A proper job for the girls. They laid new planks, cut chicken wire and hammered nails with all their might. All that's needed now is to roll out the red carpet and the Camas track will be fit for the queen (she's been cruising around the Isles recently so we hear).

Here's Ros protesting at the terrible working conditions as a Camas volunteer - no tea breaks!

It was a hoot of a week full of work and play and sunny days and starry nights. To top it all off on the final evening we paddled out on the calm, clear and ever so magical water. We were not the only creatures out to play in Camas Bay that night...

Four dolphins came to dance and dance around our kayaks!
Breathtaking really. Here's to Camas Bay and all that dwell here.

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Jenga tower Champions

This week a lovely load of Worcester folk visited us for the first time..... here they are ...spelling...Camas
After the kayaking, absailing and general fun of camas life, they too braved a soaking wet night on Iona to have a wild time at the Ceilidh. And their only complaint was it wasn't tough enough.... so we set these hardy girls a new challenge. (sorry boys - you were hardy too, but that's what one of your girls said.)
Filling their backpacks full of heavy bottles of water, trangiers, tents and much insect repellant we set off on a long walk to the most beautiful beach to stay there for the night. They didn't care that they fell in the water, they were on a mission to be the first to use poo creek (you know who you are) they used rocks as stages for air guitar performance and I think they ate midges for breakfast (they didn't seem too keen on porridge anyway.) The surroundings rewarded their glee with the most beautiful sunset and full moon rising, seals in the bay and a night full of stars. They told very silly jokes and stories around the camp fire, gulped down smores and relished the outdoor life.
Striding back to Camas full of life, stories and ideas, we felt they had definitely earned their John Muir award. They set up loads of fun and games for challenge entertainment, which made us have to use our brains to describe 'famous' people who we'd never heard of. Then on to lovely songs around the fire.