Margaret Smith (Nee McGroary)
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Margaret Smith (Nee McGroary) - Rhowniar, Wales, 1968

I attended Rhowniar in February 1968. I was picked by my friend, Marion McMillan who was chosen because she was hockey captain (I had no sporty skills at all!). We had to go for a full medical before being allowed to travel and my parents had to contribute to the course by paying Glasgow Corporation 2 guineas!!!! I think I was allowed to take £5.00 for spending money. This would have been a great amount for my parents to part with. Although I had been camping with guides many times - this was a huge adventure! I remember we were 'escorted' on the trains by a woman? Two trains at least. I had to, also, hire most of the equipment. The red? anoraks and the yellow Helly Hansens. Oh, and the boots!!!

I still have my log - in very good condition - and, having recently made contact, again, with a friend from Rhowniar - and am hoping to find some more of the IDWAL group (click here to view photo) and expand the notes I took then before my memory starts giving out on me!!!

Rhowniar's influence has stayed with me all these years! It was such a good grounding. I didn't turn out to be a rock climber, sailor or cave explorer. Nor am I particularly fit!!! But I like to think I am a good friend, a team player and a good listener. I love flapjack and dried apple - hee hee and Kendal mint cake was 'the works'!! My two girls have been lucky to attend similar courses in Scotland and I know this gives kids a good grounding in life.

My husband and I attended an Outward Bound reunion one year (can't remember when) in Glencoe. He had attended Loch Eil in his younger days. I have to say that reunions are a MUCH MORE ADULT type of course!!!!

The only regret I have is that, in 1968, not many people had cameras. I do so wish that I had more images of my time there. I often wonder if the school kept any info of our time there?

No cameras, no phones - parents sent food parcels and the we took the bare minimum in clothing. No fancy hairdryers, straightners or make-up. Just a great bunch of girls from so many different backgrounds sharing knowledge, tasks and limited space!

Thank you Outward Bound!

Margaret Smith
(Nee Margaret McGroary)

Posted 17/06/2011