When the “Saucisson de Lyon” discovers “Tiroler Knödel”: Guides and Scouts from Innsbruck-Pradl meet Scouts and Guides from Lyon
In the framework of their annual project the Ventures of the Lyon Croix-Rousse Scout & Guide Group of the Eclaireuses et Eclaireurs de France (EEdF) decided to pass their autumn camp at the Tirol International Scout & Guide Centre near Innsbruck in Austria (TPZ, Tiroler Pfadfinderzentrum).
What had started with a simple post shared on social media quickly led to initial contacts with the Group of Innsbruck-Pradl of the Guides and Scouts of Austria (PPÖ, Pfadfinder und Pfadfinderinnen Österreichs).
Here is the story of a remarkable week, marked by friendship, exchanges and many joint activities, written by Katharina, Florentina Laura, Steffi and Daniel, who are all CAEX (the name of the venture section of PPÖ) of Innsbruck-Pradl:
22 October 2016 – They’ve arrived: the first evening
Finally, the moment was here… the French have arrived at TPZ and we were finally able to welcome and meet them in person. Until then, we only had had one contact via Skype! For our first joint evening we decided to prepare “Tiroler Knödel” (some with cheese, some with speck), a typical speciality of our region.
At the start of our meeting, we were still rather nervous, not least because of language challenges, but this nervousness quickly faded away. We played a series of funny games and before we realised it was 10pm and time to head home.
23 October 2016 – Discovering Innsbruck
On the second day, we welcomed the ventures from Lyon at our meeting place. We had prepared a special game to help us bridge languages barriers: each Scout and Guide in both groups received a small card with an animal drawn onto it; our cards had the French name of the animal written next to the picture, while the cards of the French had the German name of the animal. First, those with the same animal on their cards had to find each other. Next, we had to ask each other how the animal was called in the other language. This was not always easy, as the card also showed some less common animals like insects (a cockroach, for example).
But we did not remain in our hall: in pairs (created during the animal game earlier) we left to show our guests the old town of Innsbruck. Thus, we visited the Triumphal Arc, the Anne Column, the cathedral, as well as the Imperial Palace and Gardens. Each time, Katharina and Daniel explained the significance of the sight and shared some interesting details.
Afterwards, we split the group in three smaller parties. It was time for a wide game in the old town! One group was tasked to find and “capture” the two other groups. A nice game but also rather tiring, so a pause on the banks of the river Inn was a welcome break and an opportunity to take (yet another) group photo for our souvenir album. Afterwards, it was time to return to our meeting place, where we continued to play games together. The language barriers had vanished by then and we all went home after a very pleasant day.
27 October 2016 – Evening of Crêpes
Gradually, our meeting place became crowded and right from the beginning there was a great atmosphere, with our new friends telling us what they had done since Sunday (five day we had spent in school). We opened the evening with some typical songs from Tirol and Austria and taught the ventures from Lyon text and melody of some.
Then, to everybody’s surprise, our guests offered us home made crêpes. Ahhh, we really loved them: they were delicious! We suddelny realised that these crêpes were similar to our own Palatschinken.
The evening passed without us noticing the time flying by with games, singing, and sharing of adventures experienced in our respective groups. It was later than usual when we went home that night.
30 October 2016 – The Olympic Games
Early in the morning we left Innsbruck to travel to Igls and the Tiroler Pfadfinderzentrum where our friends had their camp. Our Leaders had already prepared everything for The Olympic Games – almost a must considering that the camp site is situated in the middle of the Olympic Bob and Sledge Run of the 1964 and 1976 Olympic Winter Games (and still used to this date): split into three mixed groups we had to do a series of exercises and play a number of games, including a three-legged course, an obstacle course (with a spiders net: see the picture), a Kim game (memorising 20 objects and recalling them afterwards in 30 seconds) and some other small games. This was really great fun and we all laughed a lot!
Following The Olympic Games we shared some Gulasch, yet another typical Austrian dish, so common at Scout & Guide camps. And then it was time to learn which team had won the Games. Everyone received a small prize for the efforts.
See you soon!
The farewell was not easy at all. Even considering that we had only spent four activities together, we have forged friendships with each other. We really want to continue this adventure together, which are Scouting and Guiding, maybe already next summer, who knows? Therefore, dear friends from Lyon: « Gut Pfad », « Pfiat-enk » and « à très bientôt » !