Thursday, 17 December 2015

Senior Branchers had a ball in Killarney!

This year the theme was a Princess Ball as it was the launch party for the new Journey Programme. My group and I headed to Killarney from Carlow. The trip was interesting as none of us had a clue where the hostel was, and as hostels are always behind some trees, it’s a requirement to drive past it about five times. When we finally reached it, we discovered that it was huge with loads of space and rooms.

Each room had a different princess picture on it! There was a Glass Slipper room, Princess Castle, Tiara etc. After making our beds we headed down to the kitchen for some lovely grub and a very chatty room filled with about 50 Senior Branchers and Leaders. The atmosphere was enthusiastic and friendly.

After dinner we all took part in a princess quiz. If you thought you knew nothing about Disney princesses, that definitely wasn’t the case after you took part in the quiz. There was a tie-breaker between my team and another, so we had to recreate a scene from one of our favourite Disney movies. Unknowingly, both teams chose Cinderella and the fitting of the glass slipper. The other team won due to their scene including Guiding and referring to hiking, but we had great fun doing ours too. The prize was a handcrafted Senior Branch Christmas star. That evening, before bed, we were given time to mingle in the front room, which had wi-fi. Wi-fi on camp? Who would have thought!

The next morning, after a lovely sleep, we were served breakfast of cereal, toast and eggs any way you could imagine them! There was scrambled, boiled, fried and even poached (we were that posh)! We were then split into two groups, one doing the Killarney Monopoly Run, the other visiting a famous place called Muckross House. I chose the Monopoly Run.

We were released into Killarney with a list of stuff to find, selfies to take and a group of girls from all over. One of the tasks was to sing a Christmas song under the big clock! My team drew in the biggest crowd as we were like BeyoncĂ© singing. After completing as many of the challenges as we could, we headed back to check in before the monopoly time was up. We headed back for lunch and were told the winner would be announced at the ball! After lunch we were given red velvet princess cupcakes and, to say they were delicious, was an understatement! Tammy, our QM, had slaved over a hot stove while we were enjoying the previous night’s quiz (thanks Tammy)!

In the afternoon we had a guest talk from Sinead Cady - the ‘You Tuber’. She gave us a lesson on make-up, to help us be prepared for going out to the ball looking our best! She was lovely and it was great to listen to her telling us all her horror stories about makeup because we all have some too! She did a great make-up demo on her sister, then signed her book for us! Hopefully you saw us and Sinead on her Snapchat and Instagram!

We had two hours to change from Senior Branchers into princesses before our carriage for the ball would to take us to the Killarney Plaza Hotel. Upon arrival at the hotel, we posed on the staircase like true princesses before proceeding into our princess decorated room for a lovely three-course meal. This was followed by a short Guides Own and a DJ! We danced till 12 o’clock when, like Cinderella, we too had to return home.

Sunday morning we had a relaxing wake-up call and a big fry up for breakfast. We then had a talk from a lovely lady called Mary Robb from the Department of Children and Youth Affairs who asked us what we thought could be done to improve IGG. Jenny then gave us a quick Q&A session, which was hilarious before we were all given enough food to last us two weeks!

Sadly, it was then time for us all to head back home. People had come from all over Ireland. I’d made new friends and met up with old friends - girls from Cork, Carlow and Dublin.

I can’t wait for next year and hope to see you all there!

Roisin Lowe ~ Senior Branch, Carlow

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