Monday, March 20, 2017

INTO THE GREAT OUTDOORS WITH KIDS

THIS IS UNUSUAL. I am in unfamiliar territory.

Mountains and jungles are my usual environments but never thought of this place. Unbelievable!

I have never been known to teach about the outdoors, much less, bushcraft, in a corporate setting.

But I am IN a swanky oasis today, in the middle of the Cebu Business Park. I am in the City Sports Club Cebu.

I am not dreaming. I am here. It is November 19, 2016.

I am sitting near the pool and I am enjoying my meal of rice with beef toppings courtesy of the club.

In two hours I will start my lessons. Everything is ready. I got firewood and kindling. I got the green and the dry bamboos. An animal snare is set.

This is a surprise. I will be with a different crowd.


I teach adults with a sprinkling of adolescents. But not this time.

They are all kids! All thirty-two of them.

I must be dreaming. But this was not Disneyland. I do not see Mickey Mouse. Donald Duck? Oh, God. My knees begun to shake.

I am in front of them. Standing on a stage.

They are sitting with clasped hands on rows of table with good manners all and right conduct.

I wished I am in a Ronald McDonald suit. But I am not.

I looked like the Undertaker with my all-black attire minus the hat and eyeliners.

I got hold of the mic and imitate Peter Pan without success.

A fat beauty says her piece and she stole the show. I do not know where to go.


Got to work on my bag of magic tricks. No. Not yet.

Try telling them a story of dwarfs and giants and walking in a trail like Hansel and Gretel did. Camping in Neverland.

The mic changed hands and I got their ears.

Now the bag is open. Out comes a knife. Nobody touches this thing until I say so. Nobody did. Not part of the plan. Sorry.

I open up a bamboo. Time to show them how to cook rice in it.

We transfer to a place where we make fire and cook our rice. The fire roared to life and everyone poked sticks in the center. “Marshmallow barbecue!”


My fire is almost gone. Got to show them how to make a simple shelter. It was easy and quick.

Show them how the snare works. It caught a stick!

Back to the fire. Place rice inside the hole. Feed more firewood.


Talk. Talk. Talk.

Back to the fire. Rice almost cooked. The fat beauty remained. She is scheming something.

I turned my back. Woosh!

She put out the fire with water and I got a half-cooked rice.

My two hours is finished. Class dismiss!



Document done in LibreOffice 5.2
First photo courtesy of City Sports Club Cebu

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