Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Four in trouble on the Common

From Alex Campbell.

Each "Field Day" the whole school [Charterhouse] would usually go off and do a day or weekend's trip outside the school as part of an extended extra-curricular activity. Chris and I were in the Scouts and formed an expedition group with two others, Oli Smith and Guy Parry-Williams. The plan was simple enough - venture scouts would split up into groups of four, navigate a pre-arranged route through the countryside, camp out in tents overnight and return to the school the following day.

Our group decided that we needed to camp somewhere near a pub so we could go drinking during the overnight camping evening. We ended up in Binscombe and chose to camp on either National Trust land (which was prohibited) or some Army training site (which was also prohibited) - I cannot remember which.

After woofing down some baked beans, we went off to the pub and spent the evening drinking Lowenbrau and chain smoking cigarettes. It was impressive that we got served as we were only about 15 years old. For some reason, we had attracted the attention of some local youths. I distinctly remember at the end of the evening that we had to run away from the pub, completely wasted, whilst being chased by locals, in the pitch dark back to our tent hidden on some common land. We fortunately made it in one piece and returned back to Charterhouse the next day with huge hangovers. Our Field trip had been a lot more interesting than anyone else's!

Loud mouth; but he could do a handstand.

Alex Campbell - with Chris at Charterhouse.

I remember clearly that Christian was very good at PE and running. For one term during our weekly PE class, we were taught by a very temperamental Spanish student who had come over as part of an exchange programme. He was a nice enough guy but his English was terrible.

One day the teacher made the mistake of telling us that he wanted to improve his English as quickly as possible and that we should correct his English if he said something wrong. This was very entertaining because it meant the whole class started commenting on what he said and recited back to him rephrased sentences every time he opened his mouth (to the point that he could not get a word in edgeways). It slowed up class a great deal so we saw it as a great way of getting out of the difficult gym routines we were supposed to undertake. We also taught him some quite questionable English.

Chris unfortunately took it a bit far one day and was sent outside the class for blatantly taking the p*** out of what the teacher was saying but he still came near the top of the class for PE grades that term as he was the only person in the class who could do a handstand and make a decent effort of climbing a rope!