Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2017 - 12
MILL CREEK STORIES
First tent, first cookset, first foray into the wild world. Well, not exactly.
by Molly Dugger Brennan
I was a Girl Scout. I loved being a Girl
Scout. I was in a tiny troop, led by
a lovely British woman, Mrs. Eleanora Wembley. Our troop met in
the Presbyterian church basement
every Tuesday after school. I enjoyed
my time in the Scouts listening to Mrs.
Wembley so much that still today, I am a sucker for both
a British accent and Thin Mints.
Even though we were few in number, we planned a
good, old-fashioned camping trip. I plotted like it was
the Normandy Invasion. I emptied my piggy bank to
buy camping gear. I got a pup tent. Accurate description,
pup tent, since it was only big enough for two puppies. I
practiced pitching and breaking down my itty-bitty tent
until I could knock it out in 10 minutes or less. I was a
I bought a cleverly designed cooking kit, which disassembled to reveal a small mug, plate, sauce pan and skillet. I also got a collapsible shovel and a small hatchet. I
I couldn't wait for our camping trip. I was going to
test my merit, surviving the harshest elements and wildest beasts. I was the poster child for courage in the wilderness. I was 11.
In reality, our troop of nine girls and three mothers
went to Olansky's pond, the same place we all took
swimming lessons every June. We knew this pond
and the surrounding area well. It was in the middle
of nowhere on the way to nothing, a largish pond or
a smallish lake depending on recent rainfall and your
point of view.