Written by: Jessica Koong, Assistant Sixer & Scribe
We started an arduous hike this glorious sunny Saturday morning. There were many difficulties and challenges but all of us managed to survive it. This was what happened… …
“YEAH! I am so excited!” shouts of joy could be heard from the recruits. They were thrilled as it was their first hike with the pack. We first walked along a path between the Caltex petrol kiosk and the school to get to the Green Corridor. Unfortunately, the path was teeming with ants! A few of the recruits were terrified at first, but they eventually overcame their fears and walked on. The path was so narrow that one of the recruits fell into the bushes below! Then came the horrific slope that the adult leaders had to help us to get down.
Once everyone had gotten down from the slope, we started our hike. I was pretty sure that half of the pack was thankful that there was not much mud this time and half of the pack wished that there was mud as it would have been more enjoyable. We saw numerous tadpoles swimming wildly in pools of water under a flyover. To my amazement, many of them were alive! I perplexed about how they could possibly live in those puddles.
We had a short water break at the old Bukit Timah Railway station. Several cubs and adults whipped out their handphones to take photographs of this nostalgic site. I wished I had been on a train and travelled on the railway track before it was removed.
After about four to five kilometres, we reached Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. Each six laid out a groundsheet or poncho and the snacks or food we brought. There was a wide array food, from muffins and chips to grapes and sausages. It was a delectable picnic and as we were starving, we gobbled down all the food, not leaving a trace! We were able start packing up 5 minutes before Chil said, “ Cubs, start packing up!”
After our stomachs were filled, we started on the return trip to school. Kar gave us a challenge to count the number of bridges we walked under as we trudged back to Henry Park Primary School. Going back was harder than I thought. Passing the Bukit Timah station signalled that we were close to our starting point!
I thought that all of us were more exhausted than in the previous year even though we covered a shorter distance compared to about 10 kilometers last year. Perhaps it was the scorching hot weather. Last year it rained before the hike, making it cooler. This year, not only it did not rain before the hike, the sweltering heat beat down on our backs.
Just before reaching school we had to climb up the dreadful slope and it was harder climbing up than climbing down. The girls reached the school first, greeted by many anxious faces as the Pack arrived a little late. All of our shoes were still coated with mud and they looked repulsive. We cleaned our shoes with wet wipes.
Before dismissal, Chil congratulated all of us for completing the 8-kilometre hike. Hey! How did he sneak in 3 more kilometres? He had said it would be a 5-kilometre hike before we started. On well, we felt even more proud of ourselves. Well done, cubs and recruits! This hike was truly an unforgettable experience!
Pictures will be uploaded soon