Thursday, August 11, 2011

Camp Opequon 2

We've been home from camp for a few days and I think I'm finally getting back into the usual groove. Haven't mowed the lawn yet, but I did catch up on reading the newspapers.  London burning, but there was no indication of this from camp.  One day, a visitor told us that congress raised the debt ceiling.  That's all the news that I heard from outside.

Each summer I cook at camp to help pay Joni's camp tuition.  For the last two summers, Joni has cooked with the rest of us, helping to pay her own way.   I always have a good time at camp.

I  resented going to camp this summer.  Even good memories of  camp cooking didn't put me into a more positive frame of mind.   I wanted to keep enjoying my lazy summer schedule at home.  I wanted to finish setting up the new classroom, work on the Spanish curriculum, but mostly I wanted to vegetate with a few good books and iced coffee. This last school year was the most stressful and taxing in recent memory.  When it was over, I didn't want to do anything else.

I didn't want to pack. I didn't want to drive almost all the way to West Virginia.  I definitely didn't want to set up the tent, sleep in the tent, or wake up in a tent.  But I did these things, and yes, I had a good time.  Camp magic smooths those real world hard edges out quickly.After the first few twitchy days and nights,detoxing from technology, I felt mightily at peace. I even had time to read a couple of books, make rough curriculum plans,and to relax with fabulous people. Observing Joni's competence, maturity, and great attitude in the kitchen was a bonus.

This is Joni's last year as a camper. She is not grown, but she is well on her way towards adulthood.  Tzippi won't start at camp for two more years. At some point in the summer it hit me that as soon as Joni makes it through adolescence,  Tzippi will be beginning a similar joyful and challenging journey.  Thinking about doing it all over again overwhelms me. Eight more years of cooking at camp, Bat mitzvah preparations, driving lessons, hormones activating,  the inevitable scrapes and emotions: Daunting to think about, but I'm here for the duration, and will take it one day at a time.

Back from camp, and summer is dwindling.  Soon the pears will be ripe and school will begin. Again and again and again.

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