Gorey CS TY Newsletter

Come have a look at the Gorey CS Transition Year Newsletter and read what the year is all about.

Descenso de Rio — October 27, 2015

Descenso de Rio

Al  llegar a Galway nos dividieron en diferentes grupos y nos asignaron nuestras habitaciones correspondientes, luego nos dividieron en 2 grupos para las actividades correspondientes a unos les tocaron las cuevas y a otros nos toco hacer descenso por el rio, yo estaba en el grupo 2 que nos toco hacer descenso de rio: nos dieron unos neoprenos, unos abrigos y  un casco  para poder hacer la actividad. Nos montamos en un bus y nos llevaron  a una montana donde estaba el rio. Luego nos hicieron saltar desde una roca al agua que estaba congelada, al tirarnos nos dijeron que empezásemos a subir  hacia arriba y nos iban parando en rocas que había para saltar.

Sin duda fue la actividad más divertida del viaje y pintaba muy divertido el viaje.

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Senderismo — October 26, 2015

Senderismo

Unas de las actividades que hicimos en Galway fue el senderismo, cada persona hacia esta actividad con el grupo que le asignaban para ese dia.

Cuando llegabas al campo por donde se iba a realizar esta actividad, te dividían en otros dos grupos dirigidos por un monitor cada uno.

Empezamos a andar y a los diez minutos aproximadamente nos paramos en una especie de isla en la que hicimos un juego en el que competían dos grupos y se trataba de buscar pistas y el que encontrara todas las pistas primero ganaba.

Seguimos andando y al cabo de un rato paramos en un rio y nos pusimos por parejas para crear un barco con material que teníamos que coger del suelo para después hacer una carreara contra los barcos de las demás parejas.

Después de andar un rato mas hicimos algunas actividades mas como crear puzzles con piezas que nos dieron los monitores, rapel, etc.

Al final de todo teníamos que encontrar la salida del bosque con unos mapas, andamos aproximadamente 15 kilometros.

Fue un dia muy divertido, en el que trabajamos en equipo y conocimos mas a la gente que nos rodeaba.

Caving — October 25, 2015

Caving

Tired from the long bus journey up to Galway, we were split into two groups. One group went caving while the other group went gorge walking. We walked out of the warm kitchen down to the shed to put on damp wetsuits, water filled wellies and uncomfortable helmets with torches. We then boarded the minibus and headed down country lanes until we stopped by a field. Everyone was very confused when we were told this was the site of the caves. After climbing over a fence and wandering through a field, we found a small opening with a stream leading into it. The stream led to us into the cave. Our wellies filled with water as we slowly walked through the caves while crouching. We were then asked if we wanted to take the adventurous  route or the easy route. The adventurous route included a crawl through a very small space with twists and turns. The easy route involved a low crouch or crawl under a huge slab of rock. Both of the routes ended in an opening with a beautiful collection of calcite building up limestone features such as stalagmites and stalactites. Some of the walls were a beautiful colour of white from the calcite (or flowstone) which we were asked to kindly not touch so it can be preserved for future generations. The cave was eroded from the river in some places which led to some people stumbling their way through the tunnels. We went down some small waterfalls and around a few winding bends until we reached the end of our journey. We were then asked to walk back through a section of the cave without our torches on. We had to put our right hand on the person in front of us and our left hand along the wall. It made the walk a lot more difficult but it was many people’s highlight of caving and it was a great team building activity. Everyone was happy to finally see the light at the end of the tunnel when we reached the end.

PEAK Day 2 (Water) —

PEAK Day 2 (Water)

Raft building was the start of the peak day with water. We were split into two groups one group went on land and one group went on water. From that the water group was split in half and each group were told to make a raft that could get us across the lake and back. The instructors showed us all the knots we would need and we were told to get to the supplies from a storage place in the woods. Once we got these supplies the group then had to make the raft from what the instructors showed us the night before. Once the rafts were made we then had to launch them in to the water and paddle across the lake, we than had a quick break and brought the raft back across and disassembled it. This was a great experience and we had a lot fun.

Canoeing was an interesting activity for most of us. It was either the breaking or making of your groups there is a lot of funny and memorial stories about the canoeing over to the island for lunch, the obstacle course and then back to the home island. One includes the many capsizing of a particular boat, another boat that was rocked back and forth till it was full to the brim with water and the last was a student fell out of the boat, tried to get back in while flipping it making a teacher as well as another student fall into the water.  The was some interesting stories about the obstacle course also about people falling through a part, getting kicked in the face in the tunnel and the monkey bars being the terror. It was all in all an enjoyable experience.

Gorge-walking —

Gorge-walking

By far the best activity of the trip. Gorge walking was the first activity I did after we arrived at Galway. The group was split in two and the other half went caving. We took a bus from the centre up into the hills to an area that the centre uses for the activity in Mayo.

The first thing we did when we arrived was admire the sheep ‘waste’ and stone walls. Then we were told to plunge ourselves into the icy cold water which made us apprehensive at the chance of catching hypothermia.

But it is fair to say during this activity we received an immense adrenaline rush surging through our bodies while climbing up rocks, prowling through the river and jumping off ledges.

PEAK Day 1 (Land) —

PEAK Day 1 (Land)

Orienteering:

For this we were given a map by our instructor. We had to find different posts and tick off every time we found one. We went in groups of four also to split up and get to know eachother better.We had to walk through the forrest to find some of them, when we found them all we had to go back to the starting point where we were given another map to go to get to the bridge where we stopped for lunch first on the way.

Building Mini Rafts:

We made these after the orienteering and a bit more walking, where we had to collect dead leaves, twigs, etc. to make the rafts. When we reached the bridge we stopped to make our mini rafts where we floated them down the river to see who’s made it to the rock.

Forest Maze:

This was a challenge as we had to navigate through the woods with no instructors. It really tested our team skills as there was many paths to choose from.

Abseiling

This was by far the best task of the day. We had to walk up to the place where they do the abseiling, and were given our harness and helmet. We where then allowed to go down the steps and look at the rock front which we would be abseiling down from.

Our Stay in Petersburg O.E.C —

Our Stay in Petersburg O.E.C

For four days we stayed inside the main house on the Petersburg site. Upon arrival, we all dumped our luggage and valuables at the front door and headed to an assembly, where we were read the basic rules of the place.  “Boys are to use the back stairs; Girls can use the main stairs. Anyone on kitchen duty is expected to be down, in the kitchen, by the required time. And please, show the ghosts the utmost of respect”

Death and haunting seemed to be a common theme on the Petersburg grounds. I myself recall a story about an axe wielding murderer, two dead landlord sons, a drowned baby, and a children’s graveyard. These stories became so frequent, that a lot of us began to get suspicious. Eerily suspicious…

But apart from all that, the house was a generally pleasant place to stay in for the four days. Food was prepared for us while we were out on activities, which was nice, and we had breakfast, lunch, dinner and tea inside the mess hall. Everyone was split into four groups, each taking turns to serve as mini waiters and waitresses throughout the day. They also cleaned up after everyone had scraped their plates off, which proved teenagers inefficiency at washing dishes

Dorms were self explanatorily split between boys and girls, which led to a few episodes, including all the lads sleeping in the same room for a night, together, dreaming peacefully. We were up early enough in the morning each day, the teachers waking us up at around 8 o’clock by knocking on our doors loudly.

In our free time, we had the lay of the land to wander….And primarily stayed inside, playing cards and drinking tea. Every night, we wrote up reflections of the day’s events, our general takes and opinions.  Self improvement and the facilities improvement seemed to be primary themes in the lines of questioning.

Galway – A Short Video — October 23, 2015
Self defense — October 10, 2015

Self defense

Self defense was by far my favorite workshop out of all of them. Unfortunately only group one of the Galway groups have been able to do it so far. The first day starts with an introduction to self defense and trying your best to avoid a fight in the first place. The instructor was telling us how to try and avoid a fight and how to defuse the situation. After this we learned some basic strikes and how to stun an opponent.

The second day was far more action packed and interesting because we paired up with a partner and learned to fight from the ground and to push an opponent off you. After lunch we came back in and started to grapple against the rest of the class which was the most enjoyable part of the workshop as you got to compete with the rest of the class. Finally to finish the workshop we had to fight the instructors with full body armor on. This gave us the chance to show what we learned without restrictions. Overall this workshop was one of the best.