Where ever we wander…where ever we roam…Pax Lodge will always be our home.
This is probably a familiar line to many of you, any Unit that has chosen to learn the Pax Lodge song as part of a Badge, Challenge, or Thinking Day event has probably sung these words. Perhaps some of you, like myself and my mom, have actually lived them. There is always a friendly face waiting for you at Pax, and who knows maybe you’ll even run into someone you know!
Last month I had the opportunity to travel with my mom to attend the Pax Lodge 20 year Staff and Volunteer reunion. We both spent some time working at Pax Lodge in the 90s and we excited to have the opportunity to return to our home away from home to catch up with old friends and revisit favorite spots around London. The reunion was scheduled to
coincide with the 2011 Grow Centenary event (events were held at all four World Centres), allowing us a chance to participate with Guides and Scouts and celebrate 101 global years of Guiding.
It’s amazing how friends made in Guiding are truly life-long friends. Hours after arriving my mom was shocked to see a Danish Girl Guide that had worked with her at Our Cabana in Mexico walking down the hall way. They greeted each other and started chatting like the 10 years since they had seen each other had not passed. The same was true during the Reunion dinner when former co-workers we hadn’t seen for a decade arrived and we started talking and laughing and talking like no time had passed at all. One of the permanent staff members there is a fellow Canadian, Albertan, and the organizer of the Alberta Young Women’s Trefoil group that I belong to (so I guess we can say that our Trefoil group had a meeting last April!).
While we were there we also had a chance to catch up with a fellow Canadian that I worked with at Our Chalet. Jennifer has been living in London in for about ten years now and met us for a pub lunch and impromptu walking tour of London. We ended out visit with my final cookie sale of the season – two boxes of classic Girl Guide cookies, imported
especially for Jennifer. I’m not sure that we did the currency exchange right, but that is just fine with me! It was a fun and somewhat surreal experience to sell Girl Guide cookies in Leister Square!
If you haven’t been to a World Centre, what’s stopping you? Pax Lodge is, in my opinion, the easiest World Centre to get to and with no language barrier to work with, is a great introduction to the World Centres. Once you are there, you’ll be hooked and before you know it you’ll be planning your next trip to another one!
By Guider Heather
3rd St Albert Pathfinders and Alberta Lone Rangers
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There is nothing better than catching up with good friends. It was wonderful seeing Heather again. I love the extensive friendship circle I have created from the seasons I have spent at Our Chalet. I couldn’t agree more with Heather; spending time at any of the World Centers is a wonderful experience that lasts a lifetime.
I also must confess I scoffed those cookies in a week– it had been over 10 years since my last box(es)! Delicious! Thanks again and I look forward to our next visit!
They are lifelong friends, and the joys of modern technology help that, as I’ve met a Guider who’s husband is Royal Marines while the family was posted to Canada for two years, we met while she was at the Thinking Day events at Our Chalet while I worked there. His colegues were shocked that I would drive 1400km to see someone I’d only met once before, but I did also visit my friends in Edmonton during the trip from Victoria, one who also worked at Our Chalet and brought me my song book to England when it was found after the snow melted as I’d lost it on the way back from a campfire. That mold has history!
I was odd while staying at Pax Lodge on a family history visit from where I was working at GirlGuiding Waddow Hall when this woman comes up to me and says “Hello Rosemary,” and I’m thinking where do I know this person from. She had been at the Friends of Our Chalet skiing week, and was staying at Pax Lodge for her Grand-daughter was getting her Gold Duke of Edinburgh award at Buckingham Palace the next day.