4th Jul 2012
Day 5 - Manly League Team & Aquatic Centre
Believe it or not we had another fine day. Only at the end of the day when handing of the boys to their billets did we start to get a few drops of rain.It has been quite cold though so hoodies have been a must.
It should first and fore-most be mentioned that we had three birthdays on the tour today. Lopini, Mason, and Russel (who is now eyeing up the pension). The Collaroy prepared a lovely cake and we honoured these individuals in the customary way with song and candle.
Most of the packing of bags was done and dusted before breakfast. We had two final Collaroy activities for the boys to chose between - the climbing wall and the giant swing. We ended up with two evenly sized groups and the fun began. Hopefully photos and perhaps movies will be posted soon for these activities.
John Leach weaved some magic over the last day or so and managed to get us a visit to see the Manly Rugby League team being put through their paces. The boys did the haka for them and were able to get autographs and have a chat to them. A couple lucky boys were given caps and Steve Matai gave Mikey his practice T shirt.
From there we headed for a MacDonalds for lunch (lucky people in the queue behind us!!) and then on to the aquatic centre. Most of the boys swam. The specatcle of the fun being had in the water by the boys persuaded Ants P to don speedos (which drew gasps, schreaks, and awkward sideways glances as he emerged from the changing rooms). Some of the boys had a turn on the diving board. I will search for the video clip of Ants going in off the board but as a responsible journalist on tour I must warn you that some scenes may disturb.
We headed for Manly oval for the transfer of the boys to the billetting families. The boys greated their hosts with hand-shakes and smiles and the host families seem lovely. It will be a little daunting for many of the boys and we will not doubt hear how things are going at the game tonight. Hopefully the billets will remain as friendly after we've kicked their butts on the footy field.
With the kids off our hands, Russel now getting too old to go out at night, and nothing on TV but a silly old rugby league match, the coaching team found their hotel room, had a quiet snack (luckily there were some bread roles and bottles of water left over from lunch yesterday) and went straight to bed...
I should also add, the complements that we received from the Collaroy about the boys have been amazing. The kitchen staff have been really impressed with the manors of the boys, the little Chinese room-cleaning man ranted on in pidgeon english about "very clean and tidy rooms - thank you very very much" and the Collaroy management staff said they have been one of the nicest bunches of boys that they can remember. You can be proud of them - we certainly have been.