A quick recap of last night- the crew cooked us a wonderful dinner of pasta which was quickly demolished as a horde of ravenous TBLers descended on it like a flock of seagulls fighting over the last chip. Following dinner, we came together to play a few more games. Yay team bonding! To start us off, we played a fast-paced game of Zip Zap Zoom (Zuan!) Then came a second attempt at the name game, during which such gems like "Delicious Dennies", "Saucy Sophie" and "Titillated Tuan" were born. As a testament to how far we've come as a group already, the game was a lot smoother, apart from a few hiccups here and there.
We broke off and bonded with our new accountability buddies before settling in for what proved to be a long and cold night. To ensure the song stayed stuck in our heads, we awoke to the lovely voice of Carly Rae Jepsen singing "Call Me Maybe". Reviving slightly over a steaming mug of tea and warm toast, we all piled onto the bus and headed to Adam's Lead, ready to tackle our first ever service project! Yeah buddy!
On arrival, we were greeted by members of FOAL (Friends Of Adams Lead) who gave us a quick debrief. We essentially had three main tasks: to weed out 20 sites, to dig holes into which posts would later be mounted, and to repaint signs. As weeders, we were grateful for their charts distinguishing between native plants and weeds, because we had to try and make sure we didn't harm the native species. It was great to finally be able to do some physical activity, especially after sitting on a bus all day. It was especially rewarding to be able to look back on the work we'd already done and see how much we'd accomplished. To keep us going throughout the day, we were supplied with freshly picked mandarins which were among the juiciest I'd ever had! After a grueling couple of hours, I have increased respect for those who had dedicated their time to the area, because it's a massive undertaking that requires countless hours of work. Despite all our hard work, I felt like we'd barely scratched the surface of all the jobs to be done, so massive kudos to FOAL for their truly inspirational passion and dedication!
As a reward for our hard work, we were treated to a delicious lunch which consisted of sandwiches, cakes, cookies and warm soup. It was seriously an amazing meal, and we were all very satisfied, As the cherry on top, two baby joeys were brought in and we were lucky enough to be able to pat and take photos with the cute little critters. Feeling very sated and well taken care of, we boarded the bus (with perhaps a little more extra weight!) and departed onto the road to Quirindi, from which I am now writing this post.
Here's to a successful and fun first service project, and to many more in the near future!
By Wilson Kwong
Photos by Tuan Nguyen & Ravneel Chand