Outward Bound Day 5

Day 5: Friday

 We are currently on the coach heading back to School after a fitting finale to this unforgettable week.

The day began with a final hurrah from the alarm sheep; clearly feeling redundant outside the boys’ quarters, it headed to the wooden terrace outside of the rooms occupied by our female staff and proceeded to tap dance up and down. It had the desired effect and resulted in everyone making it to breakfast on time (just).

In the glorious sunshine, the children made their way down to the wharf to don their buoyancy aids for one last time. The Year 6s lined up on the wharf and one by one they made their way to the side before testing their mettle.  On the count of 3, each child who decided to take on this challenge then had to leap off of the wharf into the fast flowing estuary below before swimming to the ladder (or rescue boat if they missed the ladder) and climb out.  To add to the challenge, the jump had to be timed to avoid the occasional fast moving barrel jellyfish (they don’t sting but, well, they’re still jellyfish). The Year 5s then followed suit and then all showered and changed before our final presentations. Some hilarity was added to the occasion as a rather friendly jellyfish attached itself to Mrs Clark’s bottom!

This experience summed up the emotional journey that the staff and children have been on this week.  As we watched each child edge their way to the side, we knew that for some it represented an exciting activity yet for others it would be a real personal challenge. There was a real sense of shared pride as we watched children who, in some cases have just come out of arm bands and found it difficult to jump into a swimming pool, face up to their own fears and launch themselves over the side. It genuinely brought a lump to the throat as their classmates applauded and cheered each child before hugging them as they returned up the ladder to the jetty. This  level of camaraderie has been a joy to witness on every activity and will only serve to forge stronger bonds between the children.

So our adventure has drawn to a close; our bags are packed and we are on our way home. I hope that your children will take the time to share their adventures with you and that these fantastic memories will be etched in their minds for many years to come.

We look forward to seeing you this evening – I hope you all have plenty of washing powder!