Nick was still in shock from his recent and successful completion of the week long RYLA camp (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards).  He described the first three days of the camp as full of inspirational speakers from whom he learned interpersonal skills and the nuances of relationship building. 
Thanks to inside knowledge (unwittingly shared with him) he knew he would be forced out of his comfort zone and was not disappointed when Army supervisors called a 3AM muster, broke up previously comfortable groups alliances and allocated camp participants into totally new groups for the journey to Rangitoto.  Nick then reported surviving 22 hours of “forming, storming and performing” physical and mental challenges, all of which were completed whilst totally drenched, thanks to torrential rain. 
Interestingly, Nick found the biggest challenge of his camp experience was trying to “work in” with one of his new team members who was slightly autistic and as such presented with behaviour that he felt was entirely inappropriate for an aspiring leader.   The effort it took to work with this person left Nick totally frustrated and made him seriously question how this person had been accepted for RYLA.
At the “end-of-camp” award ceremony, he was utterly surprised to learn that his group had come second in the gruelling Rangitoto challenges.  Nick then realised that working with this particularly difficult group member had in fact provided him with a very important life lesson, and it was all about “empathy”.  This revelation changed Nick’s view of the camp experience and with the benefit of hindsight, he realised he had actually had the time of his life.  He is still “buzzing”.
Nick has been a member of our club for a year. He is the Director of the new Environment & Science committee.