Friday, 21st June, was a day we will always remember. It was the day we left our homeland, Anguilla, to visit the Isle of Wight, a land we have never seen before. Along with fourteen other specially selected pupils, we were very excited to begin our journey.
We met at Blowing Point, took the ferry to Princess Juliana Airport to wait for our flight to Paris. We checked our baggage and waited for several hours playing games, cards, and some children went to look at the shops and to eat. We all spoke to each other a lot because we were very excited.
We finally boarded the plane to France. This was a very long journey and most of us had never travelled for such a long time on a plane. We had a meal, played video games. Some of the children went to sleep, but not us. The flight attendants were friendly and nice.
I was glad that we landed safely in France but I enjoyed seeing the airport, which had a lot of shops. I was tired by then but I did not sleep because I wanted to see everything. From France, we took a plane to London and met Teacher John Hilsum who took us to a huge bus. We were all very tired but we had not finished our journey as yet. The coach took us to the ferry crossing. We missed the ferry so we went to get a snack to eat. We also visited an amusement park where we took some thrilling rides. Eventually we got on the ferry, which took us to the Isle of Wight. When we got off the ferry we took another coach, which took us to the East Dene Center, our residence for the week.
At the Center we thought we could get some rest but we were faced with a fire drill soon after dinner. The fire drill soon became a part of our program at the East Dene Center. The Center was a comfortable place and we eventually settled into our accommodations.
(The above excerpt was written by Akeem Rogers and Dave' Smith of IHPS)
At half past nine, Sunday, 23 June, all sixteen of us campers left East Dene for an island tour. Our guide told us facts about the Isle of Wight, like parts of it are made of sand, clay, and chalk. The island is getting smaller because of erosion. In one area, the erosion is at a rate of 2 metres per year.
The environment was very clean and healthy. We went to a place called "The Chines" where we saw chines, which is an area that has eroded to form a crevice in the land. We stopped at a steam train station where we rode on a steam train built in the late 1800's. Eventually, the train came and we boarded. The train made a sound, like music. On the trip we saw many grass fields and cows. The trip was very smooth. Taryn did not go on this ride but rode on a different type of transportation, an ambulance. It turned out to be nothing more than exhaustion.
Once she was checked out, she and Teacher Art got in a taxi and met us at The Blackgang Chine. It was like an amusement park. There were models of famous inventors, water slides, a maze, a fun house, and dinosaur world.
After a day full of excitement, we went back to east Dene, showered, and went to a fabulous Chinese restaurant called Shanghai Lils, in Ventnor. We had a three-course meal. The first course we ate with a knife and fork. The second course we ate with chopsticks. It was hard at first, but then we got used to them. The third course was ice cream.
After our meal, we walked back to East Dene. On the way, we somewhat got lost. I said it was one way and the teachers said it was the other way. Teacher Art sent three campers along with me my way and the others went the other way. Unfortunately, my way was the correct way, so everyone had to turn around and come my way. When we got home we went straight to bed.
(The above excerpt by Calyn Harrigan MVP)
On Monday morning the 24th of June, the CAMP BE AWARE delegation ventured to Lake Middle School, which was planned to be a day of fun. When we arrived at the school, we were greeted by friendly faces. We were then shown to a classroom where lots of children waited eagerly to get to know us. Our partners then showed us around the school. The school is so different to Anguilla's schools. It was a big school with lots of children. Most of them had never seen black children before.
Later, we were split into groups and taken into different classes where we made lots of friends and learned lots of things. Some of us learned different objectives in the different subject areas. Some of the subject areas were Math, English. Science, Geography, and Information Technology. The teachers and the children were interested in Anguilla, especially during the geography lesson.
After the lessons a bell rang to signal that all classes should gather for General Assembly. We joined in with the children in singing a mixture of songs. It was very lively, indeed.
We were then treated to a lovely lunch. After eating, we were led to an IT room. We were then paired up with some of their students. They did write-ups on our lives in Anguilla. Coming out of the IT room, we were met by some welcoming friends. They were very attracted to the four boys that were in the camp. They promised to join us at bowling, later that night.
We went back to East Dene, ate, and rushed out to make our bowling session. First thing, we had to change our regular shoes for bowling shoes. Once everybody had shoes and had selected their balls we were ready to bowl.
Ten minutes into our game, our friends that we met at Lake Middle School surprised us. We played bowling for the first time and boy, oh boy, was it fun. Some of us even made strikes. In this game of bowling you have to use your brain and keep your eyes on the pins. The bowling balls are quite heavy but we managed. That night was loads of fun and we would like to do it again someday.
(The above excerpt is by Krystie Webster, Krystal Webster, and Ojeda Vanterpool, SGPS)
We had just arrived at the Dinosaur Museum early Tuesday Morning and were taken to a room where we had to use our five senses. There were small boxes containing different things from a dinosaur and we had to push our hands deep into the hole, feel the object, and then we lifted up the lid of the box and read the information to see if we guessed correctly. One box told me that we touched dinosaur poop! We also saw a huge structure of dinosaur bones. We thought they might come tumbling down on us.
After the museum we went to Needles Park in Alum Bay. It was weird. At the very tip we saw things pointed in the air. They were at a point and they looked like needles so that must be how the park got its name. We went on a chairlift, which is like an ordinary chair hooked onto a very strong piece of cable. It was scary for some of us, especially when we looked down.
Next, we visited the Glassworks' Factory. They make the glass with sand and put the glass in very hot ovens to melt it down. When it is melted down, they use a pole to take it out. It is not hard so they are able to roll it out into any shape they want. When the man was finished, we were surprised how beautiful and exotic the piece was.
After our evening meal we left for Cineworld in Newport. There we watched Spiderman. It was a very wicked and awesome movie.
(The above excerpt by Taryn Gumbs, Shantel Carbon, and Jevon Morton, and Vemicia Woods, VPS)
On Wednesday, 26 June 2002, we ate breakfast at East Dene. Then we went to East Cowes where we boarded a boat called the Jenny M to go to Portsmouth, on the mainland. On the boat we made friends with some kids who go to Lake Middle School.
The first things we saw when we got to Portsmouth were some very big anchors. Then we went to the Mary Rose Museum. The Mary Rose was an old wooden ship that sank in the 1540's. An Irish lady told us to look in 4 wooden chests. We broke into groups and had to work together to find out what the owners of the items did, if that person could read or write, and if that person had a lot of money or not. The person my group was detecting was a navigator because there was a compass and a sexton in his belongings. He could not read because he used pictures, and he was not rich, but he was not poor either.
After going through the Mary Rose Museum, we went to see the remains of the actual ship. While we were observing the ship we listened to more information through a thing that looked like a telephone. There were lots of chemicals running through the ship to preserve the remains.
Next, we went to see the HMS Victory, a ship that was used by England to fight the French in the late 1800's. A man told us that that if we were on that ship at the same age we are now we would probably have jobs being powder monkeys. We would be the ones responsible for carrying and loading the powder for the cannons. The people on the ship were not allowed to smoke tobacco so they chewed it. The youngest person at the table had to sit on a barrel and the others would spit the tobacco at the one on the barrel. If it missed it would fall into a bowl at the young person's feet. Once you were over the age of 14 you were given wine to drink because the water was not very good.
We went back to the Jenny M, took it to East Cowes, and took the White Bus back to east Dene. After dinner we went to the Disco ice skating arena. It was a lot of fun and sometimes very painful. Jevon fell and hit his head and Ojeda and I fell lots of times along with lots of other kids but that never stopped us. Our friends from Lake Middle School met up with us again. Hannah and two of her friends skated with us and it was a wonderful night.
(The above excerpt by Jennifer Mussington and Jahia Esposito TGOI)
June 27th, our sixth day on the lOW, began with a healthy breakfast at 7:45. We left with our tour guides, Maureen and Stephen Tutton, who by this time were more like good friends. We went to Branstone Farm with children from Woodfield Primary. There were animals like we have in Anguilla. However, the sheep were much bigger and have more wool.
We next visited Carisbrooke Castle that was owned by a very rich women in the olden days. Our tour guide told us that everyone in the castle wore dark clothes. Late in the afternoon we went to make brass rubbings. We covered the brass plate with black paper and rubbed it with our fingers until the outline was visible. Then we coloured it. It was very interesting.
After that we went to a church and had to look for small faces carved into the church walls. Akeem and I won because we found the 14 faces first.
(The above excerpt by Ferneldra Carty RPS)
On Friday we walked to St. Boniface School where we had a Smugglers Event with a very smart man named Derek Babbington, known as Billy Bones, the storyteller. He told us about people in the old days who smuggled things from France to the Isle of Wight. We role-played a day in a smuggler's life and everyone had a role. We learned how they made rope. We practised and made toilet paper rope. It was fun and a great experience.
In the afternoon we went on a hike with Stephen and Maureen. It was very hard for most of us to get to the top of the hill but we made up our minds to do it and we made it. So now we can look back for the rest of our lives and remember what we accomplished.
After dinner we went to a BBQ at the Ventor Rugby Club, sponsored by the Rotary Club. We played cricket, ate great food, and entertained our hosts by singing Anguillian songs.
(The above excerpt by Karaina Lake WEPS)
On our last day, Saturday, 29 June we set out for the Rare Breeds and Waterfowl Park. There were all kinds of animals. There were otters that looked like seals but were very small. They have very sharp teeth. We saw deer. The males have big horns that fall off every year. You can tell how old one is by how many points are on the antlers. We got to feed the deer from the palms of our hands. It felt yucky and sticky.
Male peacocks have brighter colours than the female. The peacock is a very proud bird. We saw llamas that look a little like camels. We were told that pony is different from a miniature horse because they have an extra rib.
Our last trip for the week was to Osbourne House, where Queen Victoria died. We saw the actual room where she died. There was a lot of antique furniture, which was beautiful. We saw the room where Queen Victoria's father died that she left exactly how he left it. The ceilings of all the rooms were hand-carved. We went back to East Dene to eat and then sit and wait for our bus to take us home.
(The above excerpt from Jevon, Vernicia, Taryn, and Shantel VPS)
We drove from East Dene to the ferry port. The bus was driven onto the boat. Some of us drank tea while the others slept. We arrived the Portsmouth ferry terminal and drove to Heathrow Airport where we slept for three hours on the floor. At first, the floor was very hard but after awhile, it became very comfortable. Later that morning, we checked in. We searched for our right terminal.
The plane ride was to be only for an hour to Paris. In less than no time we landed at Charles De Gaulle Airport. We were scanned through the security area and then grabbed another bite to eat before we boarded our final flight home. We boarded the plane, buckled our seatbelts and waited anxiously for the plane to take off. Our wish was finally answered. It was a long a tiring journey. It was fun playing games and watching movies at our leisure.
During the flight there was a lot of turbulence. At one point everything started to shake and the pilot told us to take our seats. Some of us were very afraid, indeed. This went on for a while but soon ceased. We finally landed at Princess Juliana. The change of climate was very hot compared to from where we came. Some of us preferred the cold over the hot.
We collected our bags, except for Akeem's. (It did arrive the next day.) We got on the ferry to back to Anguilla. In the middle of the journey the boat had to stop because something went wrong. Teacher Art was asked to steer the boat while the captain tried to fix the problem.
We were greeted by shouts and screams from our parents. As we docked we all knew that our long and tiring journey had come to an end.
We all had a great time and were very happy.
(The above excerpt by Ojeda Vanterpool, SGPS)
Our thoughts about the Isle of Wight Trip.
My trip to the Isle of Wight was very interesting. I thought it would be boring but it turned out great.
I felt very brave because it was the first time on any knd of plane.
Many people do not have the opportunity to go this far away from home and to have this type of experience. Sometimes I felt sad part of the day. The reason for this is that I don't really talk to people I don't see often. But in the end I started to talk.
My whole family is proud of me because I am the first one to go so far away from home.
This trip has given me more experience in traveling. It taught me how to read maps so i know where to go. I also benefited because I learned about a different environment.
I feel happy because when anyone mentions the Isle of Wight I can say I was there. I met a lot of friends.
I wonder if any other school children in the Caribbean ever had the opportunity to go to the Isle of Wight.
We disapproved with East Dene at the beginning because the water was cold. It was cold outside, too. However, we got used to the cold water. It was a great feeling to know that I was one of sixteen children to be chosen. Everyone in the Isle of Wight made us feel welcome.
It was the most exciting week of my life. I wish I could start this trip all over again.
This whole week ha been such a blast that I will never forget it. I learned about a different climate, culture, and a nature that is different to my own. They like fish and chips.. We like chicken and chips. There environment is bushy and we have very little grass.
I saw things I never had seen before. I have learned to walk very long distances. I have never pushed myself to do things before this trip. I would either give an excuse or say I can't do that.. I would like to continue to try new things in the future.
I think that this trip was so very exciting and hard to keep up with all of the time. This trip is one I will never forget.
My trip has been a great experience, interacting with children of another culture, and learning about British history which is partly Anguilla's history. The land forms are a lot different than ours. For example, they have hills, chines, and different soils, such as, clay, chalk and sand. I am so proud that I learned so much in such a short time.
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