From the 29th of September – 2nd of October the Kudu Patrol took part in the District RDon Competition. I have now been part of the Kudu Patrol for the last six years and I have been the Patrol leader for the last two years. I am really proud of my Patrol and I enjoy being part of it. We have been winning R-Don since I was only 11 years old so naturally I was under a lot of pressure to lead my Patrol to victory again. This year we had a better Patrol than the year before so I wasn’t as stressed out as last year.

We arrived on the Friday to find D/K already there. One Patrol had been there since the Wednesday. At least they had left our favourite campsite open. We immediately set up camp and started working It was a very hot day so we couldn’t get too much done but we did what we had to and we then set off to the goolly goosh. It was very refreshing. When we got back to camp Robbie and Vincent were waiting for us. Back at camp we did what we could and then had free time until bedtime. A couple of us decided to sleep outside which proved a very bad idea as it turned out to be very cold. Anyway I got up a bit earlier the next morning and tidied up the campsite.

Once everyone was up and had had breakfast being the drill sergeant I am I immediately put them all to work. We built a superb campsite and I’m very proud of my guys as they invented a brilliant- working gate. When the competition started I arrived at the PL’s briefing it turned out that there were only six teams participating this year which I find very sad, as R-Don is such a fun competition. We immediately changed into high gear. Everyone worked hard non-stop even Brian who wasn’t even invested at the time. They only slowed down once at which time I promised them Spur if they won and they immediately started working again. That night we had to prepare a backwoods meal. We prepared a backwoods feast which the judge gave us 23/25 for. I was really pleased, as no one could believe that I didn’t know how to cook.

Later that night we had a campfire instead of the usual night game. It was lots of fun and 1st Durbanville stole the show. During the day we built a backwoods shelter out of natural materials as an STA. Two people had to sleep in it. Tjad and Michael volunteered. Robbie and I slept under the stars to keep them company. This proved to be completely stupid as Robbie and I had to move into the tent at 2 in the morning in the middle of a rainstorm. Our sleeping bags were soaked through and we were freezing cold. It was a terrible night. The next morning we got up early again due to being absolutely freezing cold. We carried on Sunday with the same enthusiasm that had been present in our Patrol throughout the whole weekend. We finished up our STA’s and handed them in.

Then it came to the prize giving. I was confident that we had done well but I could still feel a lump in my throat. But it turned out my worries were unfounded as we were once again awarded with the R-Don trophy. This was good as I had broken Baden-Powell’s hat off and wanted to fix it. I was really proud of my Patrol but while we were packing up I could feel my wallet getting thinner and thinner as our campsite was filled with talk of “prime cut steak” and so on. Oh well they deserve it. I would like to thank Robbie, Tjad, Vincent, Simon, Michael and Brian for really putting a lot of effort into this competition. I would also like to thank my mom and who ever else helped in this record-breaking achievement.

Well record equalling actually as we have now equalled 1st Durbanville’s record of six in a row. I believe we hold the record for most wins by a single Patrol. Thanks again guys and see you all next year for the record breaker.

Joseph Rom