Charlotte Taylor
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Charlotte Taylor - Aberdovey, Wales, 2012

I went to outward bound with young people from churches around the area that I live in because we are doing a pilgrimage to Virginia next year and we didn't really know each other, so we wanted to get to know each other and bond before we went any further on our pilgrimage. I don't think any of us were prepared for what was to come, we actually thought the worst thing would be not having our mobile phones! The first day we did the jog and dip, we thought that was bad, but we had no idea what was coming, and suddenly on day 2, running down a road and dunking our heads under freezing cold water seemed a very attractive idea. We canooed for 6K, then walked in the pitch black to the middle of no-where and camped surrounded by sheep. The following day we walked for 12K mostly up hills, and drunk water from a stream with chlorine tablets, and actually survived! Words cannot describe how hard the walk was, but you also can't understand how proud you feel when you reach the end in one piece. We had tears and screams, but the laughs definately out-weighed the bad stuff. We all overcome fears, and helped each other through our ups and downs, and now our friendships are so strong, and we've all seen eachother looking and feeling our worst, so things can only get better. Although we all couldn't wait to get home and have mcdonalds, the times we shared were amazing, once in a life time and unforgettable, however hard we try to forget them. I have taken from the experiance, strong friendships with people so different to myself, and I have definately learnt not to pre-judge other people. Nor should I pre-judge myself, because I am actually better at certain things than I think I am. My advice to people doing outward bound would honestly be to believe in yourself, be able to laugh at yourself, to be open-minded about things, and when things get hard, to sing your way through them. Singing and dancing makes everything so much easier (but not dancing if your on the ropes course, not a good idea at all). Don't give up, because you'll feel disappointed in yourself, and the feeling of accomplishment is unreal.