Putting up tents in solid dirt presented a bit of a challenge but a few bent tent poles in, we were up and ready. The campsite El Greco, named after Toledo’s most famous artist, was beautifully situated just outside the historic centre and reached by a winding cypress lined road.
Scouts and Explorers combined forces to make dinner on our electric stoves and gas burners, then hung out in the communal gardens before bed, ready for an early start the next day.
Fisrt task for Scouts and Explorers was cooking delicious pancakes for brakfast and cooking their own bacon and cheese sandwiches for lunch during the race in Toledo city.
In teams of 4 with a leader and a map in hand, the race was on to navigate to the 30 historic sites that our Explorer leader had chosen on the map, and text in an answer to a question about it. Points were given for speed and accuracy. Leaders were not allowed to assist in any way, being only there to ensure cooperation and safety.
1st Madrid British Scouts navigated amongst the throngs of tourists to a Roman hypocaust, Synagogue turned monastery, following Hebrew clues in tiny floor tiles, coats of arms, gateways, statues, a magnificent cathedral, and mosque, taking 5 hours to find as many answers as possible in the narrow winding streets.
Back over the river Tagus to camp and dinner, only to finds a bruised sky over the horizon. A sudden wind had blown in a storm not on that morning’s weather forecast, and a mad rush began to secure tents, move electrical equipment and find a dry place to cook.
The campsite allowed us to set up kitchen in the washblock. As we watched the lightening through the window, dinner over, we managed to make smores on an electric grill and wait for the storm to pass.