band camp, day two

July 9, 2007

It was supposed to rain today, but didn’t. It was supposed to be a nice day full of water, but it wasn’t. It was supposed to be delightful and wonderful, but it wasn’t. It was hot, again, and it will continue to be hot. I hope it gets cooler, or everyone is going to be hearing about how hot it is everytime I blog. So pray for that, please.

The campers are excited. Very excited, and already a little ragged. I forgot how the younger ones looked when they realized that it takes more than two minutes to cross campus for a rehearsal that they needed to be ten minutes early for. They look so tired, so scared already. I know that this will pass, but in my mind, I wonder if maybe they will not like camp quite so much. Life will go on. Tomorrow is the first full day of classes, so it will be better. Activity–constant activity–is better than idle hands.

Today, I will explain a boy named Michael, who I worked with when I was student teaching last year:

Michael is a nice boy. He is but a boy, however, and he is not invincible or impervious to his own wandering mind. Michael plays clarinet, and he’s lazy, and forgetful, but he’s a nice boy. I was surprised to see him here, for he rarely was prepared for class normally, and camp demands a vigilance that rivals military practices. He was a problem student at school, some would say, and spent a lot of time sitting in the hall where he couldn’t be a distraction. Band camp is not where students like him thrive. Band camp is a blight for them, or a real motivator.

I do not know yet what it will be for him, however, I do see the stress in his face as he races, all of his things together, for his 7.00 rehearsal. I can only imagine what was racing through his head as he moved on, a soon-to-be 7th grader, independent in his actions and responsible for himself. I hope they were good thoughts. I hope he does well these next two weeks. I hope he hppes the same. I also hope he has a wonderful time, and that he enjoys the dance that is…oh, now.

At this dance, a camper might find the love of his life, a candle that will burn hard and fast, extinguished a mere week after camp is over, when he has long forgetten them and moved on. Some campers find no one at all, and spend the entirety of camp alone, wandering, sad. Both of these are the exceptions. The most are well-adjusted, happy, content, hard-working and long-running. Camp is the meat and bread of their summer, and it is during this camp that they develop truly deep friendships that last lifetimes. I know of several people that I’ve known for years, in either love or hate, and those are the constants in my life, in their own way. I am grateful for them.

The second of two partial days is done. Tomorrow is when camp really goes full steam. Wish us luck, for we are held in the hands of the sun.



  1. Okay, how old are these kids again and you are a teacher for them, right?

  2. They range from 6th to 12th grade, and really I’m just the resident assistant.

  3. Oh I loved RAing, how do you like it? Granted, I had older residents. Or would you be more of a camp counselor?

  4. I’m a camp counselor for sure…

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