Pancake Heaven!

Good afternoon!

I realized yesterday just how far I have come in my lifetime from an ‘always connected’ perspective.  Yesterday morning was our annual pancake breakfast fundraiser, which as usual included scores of workers and hundreds of attendees.  In the 5AM hour I was on my way to open the facility to allow the scouts to begin cooking and perform final setup when I discovered 10 minutes into the 20-minute drive that I did not have my cellphone.  As I weighed the alternatives of turning around (we would have dozens of people delayed in beginning work, and would not have food ready for early attendees) with not turning around (I would miss multiple calls from troop members looking for last minute information), I realized how much I have become one with the culture of needing instant access to everyone in my address book.  This is the same kid who was so out of touch as a child that when I would leave the house, and head into the northern Arizona desert to play, the only connection I had was that I would need to be home by dark.  In those unconnected days, I would encounter such things as bobcats when climbing up into a cave on a mesa, bootleggers doing their business in the trees in a dry washbed, or a skeleton wearing all its earthly turquoise jewelry as erosion had exposed the random burial plot for old man Yellowhair.

I can’t even comprehend turning my kids loose similarly all day long today without any way to contact them.  In an era where we had no TV, phone or newspaper, and no radio until after dark, I recall it being days before we knew that Bobby Kennedy had been shot, while today a bomb goes off in Boston, and everyone is instantly aware.  I finally made the painful decision yesterday that it was more important to have food on time than to be plugged in to my network.  (As usual, my wife would say, I let my stomach decide for me!)  If it was one of my teenagers, they most definitely would have turned around, as the average teen today texts something like 4,000 times per month.  In any case, it was an interesting exercise to realize that I have travelled in my lifetime from not even having a TV or phone to now having 16 devices in my household that are either TVs or internet capable.  So how come actual personal communication skills are at an all time low?  Perhaps additional musings for another time….

Once I finally got there, yesterday’s pancake breakfast and silent auction were a rousing success!  We are still working through the financials, but we had great participation from a majority of our scouts, and good traffic through the door.  Numbers of plates sold were down slightly, but the silent auction activity was lively on the baskets and other items, and even without final numbers tallied, those scouts who participated will benefit tremendously from their efforts.  Many thanks to Mr. Jeorling, Mrs. Conrad, and Mr. McFetters for their coordination, and for all who donated, worked, sold, lent, ate and otherwise supported the event.  Scout accounts will be adjusted upwards in the next couple of weeks, with new funds available for summer camp or other scouting related activities.  Nicely done!

This week will be a busy one.  On Tuesday night at 6PM, Mr. Turner will continue his Personal Management merit badge class.  At 7PM is our weekly troop meeting, and this weekend is our May outing to Parson Springs.  This is an approximately 7.5 mile roundtrip backpack following Sycamore Creek, with a large swimming pool at Parson Springs.  This time of year will be warm days, cold water and nice cool overnights alongside of the babbling creek – perfect opportunities to experience the best our great Arizona outdoors has to offer.  I hope you can join us from May 3-5.  Thursday night at 7PM is our District Roundtable at the usual LDS church – all adult leaders are welcome.  At the same time and location is the monthly Ordeer of the Arrow meeting for those scouts in OA.  Miracle League service project also continues on Saturday mornings this spring.  Join the Turners in being a ‘buddy’ assisting physically challenged kids and young adults perform as athletes during baseball games at Miracle League field on Via Linda.  Contact Mr. Turner for further details.  Also, please plan ahead for two additional upcoming service projects.  Blessed Sacrament will have a talent show and spaghetti dinner the evening of May 17th, where our troop will seat, serve and cleanup.  On May 25th, we will have our early morning annual flag planting ceremony at the National  Memorial Cemetery of Arizona at Cave Creek Road north of the 101 Freeway.  This is an incredible experience of joining with Valley scout families in placing flags on 50,000 graves.  Hundreds of volunteers fan out beginning at 7AM, and have completed the task before 8AM, leaving behind a sea of red, white, and blue everywhere the eye can see.  If you have not participated, it is a memorable way to begin your Memorial Day weekend.

See you Tuesday night at the troop meeting!

Mr. Cole