Brian Russell
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Brian Russell - Aberdovey, Wales, 1968

I joined the OB in Aberdovey, Wales in November 1968 as part of my apprenticeship, where I joined Nelson Watch along with a mixture of Scottish and German fellow bounders, which I have to admit was great fun but a fairly volatile mixture at times.
I enjoyed all the Sea and mountain activities and will never forget the feeling when leaving the swimming pool after 6 hours in mid December, (or the shower afterwards).
My favourite activity was the 4 day hike which took us over Cader Idris. I recently tried to do just a short walk up Cader with my wife but unfortunately the additional 40 years have taken their toll, and so we surrendered and admired the view from half way.
The toughest challenge for me was the 1 day Canoe safari across the river in a canoe that had taken offence to me and tried everything in its power to remove me, with eventual success half way back leaving me a very cold swim home

My lingering memory will be the packed lunches, where was always so cold we could never spread the items, only slice, so we always ended up with "Cheese, onion, apple and jam", sandwiches, mmm - followed by the then famous house speciality "Flapjack".

Without doubt the month I spent in Aberdovey has been one of the foundations for my life and still today the guiding principles of teamwork and leadership I learned there, are part of my everyday life.