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NSGSO

image imageWhile I was waiting for my last train, I could see a group of young people with large bags chatting together. The outline of an instrument bag instantly told me that these people where going to the same place I was! Before long I was chatting with them about the latest books and films, finding out what had happened in past courses and how Guiding/Scouting was involved their lives. After we had went on our last train to our destination, my group of new friends and myself headed towards a small mini-bus. Shortly after more people arrived from the trains. Our first challenge was to fit everyone in the mini bus as well as the suitcases/bags and our instruments.
Upon arriving we sat down to eat a large dinner. After this, we had our first full rehearsal where I met the brass section. Our enthusiastic conductor Leon soon had everyone playing the pieces together. Which truth be told needed a bit of work on them.
The week continued with full rehearsals (The whole orchestra), sectionals (Each section of instruments) and evening activities. I found myself meeting new people each day, getting better at my trumpet and strengthening new friendships. On the Wednesday a few others and I visited the local village to buy our sectional tutor some presents. The brass section got him a wooden map with dots showing where we were all from as well as some sweets. The woodwind section got their tutor a cabbage! It’s an inside joke, I’m told. The next day we said thank you and goodbye to the tutors and gave them their gifts.
From the Friday, we only had full rehearsals to get ready for the concerts. As the concerts drew nearer, the pieces got better and better. At our first concert, everyone was looking smart in their Guide/Scout uniform. You could see Scouts, Explorers, Guides, Senior Section and Leaders. It was amazing to know that all of us had been strangers a week before and now we were all working together to create this beautiful music. The concert went so well that we played an encore.
Perhaps one of my favourite memories of that day was on the coach home, when one person started singing a campfire song soon the whole bus was full of happy singing voices. It shows how Guiding and Scouting brings people closer. The camp fire songs continued until we reached our home for the week.
On the last night, we had finished both concerts and could all relax. Everybody was given a programme and then proceeded to get signatures from the rest of the orchestra. Then the talent show started. It was absolutely brilliant. There was a cellist group and whenever they shouted ‘change’ each cellist would move to the place next to them playing the cello there. They would continue at the place they had left off playing but playing a different part of the song (For example the person playing the tune would move and then start playing the bass line). Other acts included a brass group and singers (who sang a song about the week). The most memorable act was the bazookas group. These guys came on with their real instruments before putting then down and then played a song with the plastic bazookas. Everyone soon joined in singing along.
This week was an amazing experience with many unforgettable memories.

Katie Hodgson