A Real Camaraderie

small camp girl kayaking in rapid

Our kayaking camp girls, the “Rockbrook Rapids,” just completed their week-long kayaking trip camp today with a run on the Upper Green River. Altogether this week they paddled the Tuckasegee, the Nantahala, the Broad, the Chattooga, and the Green. The group spent the night out a couple of times camping, and returned to camp the other nights. The water levels were high everywhere, but not too crazy, and with no rain all week— nothing but sunshine! —the trips enjoyed excellent boating conditions. It was fun hearing the excitement in the stories the girls told after arriving back at camp, accounts of specific rapids, odd things seen in the river (for example a picnic table and a swing set!), and the personal quirks that become funny when a group of girls spends this much time together. It was obvious that they were enjoying a real camaraderie as well as the thrill of all that whitewater. It was a great week of adventure.

We’re about a week into this first session, and to the experienced eye, it would be possible to guess that by measuring the number of finished craft projects appearing around camp.

There seem to be examples everywhere, and if it’s something that can be worn, then those colorful handmade crafts are now part of the landscape. Of course, almost every wrist has a friendship bracelet or lanyard adorning it, for example. I’ve also seen delicate and elaborate beaded necklaces coming from the jewelry making activity. Pottery is being glazed, and tie-dye t-shirts rinsed and dried for wearing. Woven placemats and potholders, cross-stitch designs, sequined headbands, leather bracelets, and knitted hats are now proud possessions (perhaps later gifts). The girls have also been painting small smooth stones, using acrylic paint to blend colors. They’ve been making post cards, ready now to be mailed home. You too will be impressed when you seen these crafts.

One quick reminder about mail… It’s a BIG deal to receive mail at camp. Everyday after lunch the girls check their mailboxes on the porch, ending up excited that they have something waiting for them, or a little disappointed that “maybe next time” they’ll have a card or letter to read during rest hour. You know the address, so keep that mail coming!

Camp is feeling really good. The girls are happy and engaged, excited and active. They are growing closer as friends, to each other and their caring counselors. There’s a daily enthusiasm for the simplest things, from muffin break to free swim. Friendly greetings punctuate every walk we take. A genuine community is taking shape with everyone involved. It’s beautiful to witness and a joy to share.

Camper Friendship

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