Top seventeen reasons someone (meaning ME) is not cut out to be a camp counselor. Or to go camping. Or perhaps even go outdoors. Ever.
1. Remember how I said I thought I would enjoy hiking? Well, the first day was fine. But no-one explained to my thigh muscles how they would feel the next morning, with two more days of hiking to go.
2. It is damn near impossible to take quality photographs while sweat is dripping in the one good eye you’re keeping open in front of the lens.
3. I do not enjoy the stickers (teeny tiny poke-y tumbleweeds???) that attached themselves to me. Especially my socks. By the dozens. I mean, I was like a magnet for those stickers.
4. When a centipede lands on the head of one of your campers in your cabin and all the girls are squealing like banshees and pointing and jumping all over and you’re looking around for someone to kill it and you realize, “Holy Crap, **I** am the grown up here and will have to do it myself.”
5. I stink at every single activity. Archery, target shooting, fishing, identifying fossils, spotting wildlife … you name it, my only useful capacity was to take photos of *other* *people doing those things well.
6. Having the class asthmatic pass me on the trail was a little humbling.
7. None of the kids in my group wanted to stop and wait while I whined about the stickers in my shoes.
8. Because when the student behind you in the canoe is trying to do a fancy dig with his oar and accidentally flips a huge wave of water in your face and you yelp a bad word, you will not be setting a good example.
9. Cell phone going off during campfire skits: (see bad language example of number 8.)
10. The HELL!?!?! Seriously, what is up with those stickers?!?!?
11. When you’re perched on the side of the mountain trying to take a good picture, and your brother in law asks, “When you fall, which do you want me to save, you or your camera?”
12. When you realize that honestly? The camera is more valuable to you.
13. You do not find coyote poop as fascinating as ten year olds do.
14. Much to your shock and dismay, there is not a Sonic at the top of the mountain.
15. Listening to the Burrito Song for two solid hours on a bus will make your ears bleed.
16. When a wasp buzzes right by your ear, and you slap it away, that is perfectly acceptable behavior. Unfortunately, if you slap it onto the arm of the mom sitting next to you and it stings her …. You probably have not made a friend for life.
17. When climbing the steepest hike of the week, and you ask the coach, jokingly, if you are the fattest, most out of shape parent who has ever attended camp as a counselor …. And he has to think about it.
**disclaimer: I’m kidding. Well, about some of it, anyway. I really did hate the stickers poking me through my socks, and the centipede thing was pretty disgusting, and I felt bad about the bee sting, but overall, we had a great time. No-one had to push me, pull me, or in any other manner help me up or down any of the trails. I had seven of the most pleasant, agreeable, cheerful 5th grade girl campers in the history of camping, and enjoyed my time with them immensely. (Again, except for the centipede episode.) The weather could not have been better, I greatly enjoyed getting to spend time with my brother in law, watching Kellen learn and have fun with his classmates and friends in that environment was wonderful, the other parent-counselors were fun to be with (except for whoever put Vaseline on our doorknob and our toilet seat and if I find out who that was there will be hell to pay …….) and best of all? There were s’mores. Quite frankly, it doesn’t get much better than that.
Kellen, fishing. This was before the entire hour of fishing passed by without him catching a single fish. The look on his face afterwards was perhaps not quite as cheerful.
Kellen, hiking. Please take note that if I'm *above* him, taking his picture, I get credit for climbing the same damn mountain.
My nephew ---- the second most cute kid there this weekend.
OK --- here's the story behind this picture. While I don't consider myself a hypochondriac, per se .... I *do* make sure I'm prepared at all times, for all circumstances, with a veritable cornucopia of drugs in my purse. Tylenol, benadryl, immodium. Well, actually, those are the only three I carry. Plus a couple of Excedrin Migraine, when it's necessary to pull out the big guns. If one of *those* medications won't take care of what ails you, then you're sick enough you should go home. But at all times, I've got it covered. EXCEPT for the week at 5th grade camp, when you (I) follow the counselor instruction note and carry a back-pack instead of a purse, but you (I) won't realize until you (I) actually GET TO CAMP that without your (my) purse, you are (I am) also without any of your (my) trifecta of pharmaceuticals. So after a night spent feeling as though my allergies had been assaulted by the great outdoors, no caffeine in 24 hours, and crawling out of bed at 7am to pound on the nurse's infirmary door begging -- BEGGING -- for some kind (ANY KIND) of headache medicine .... *THIS* is what I looked like. Not pretty. Not pretty at all.
They next day, after mooching Tylenol from the nurse, a Benadryl from one parent, two Advil from another, and my cabin-mate parent finding me a Diet Dr. Pepper (thank you God, for Jacob's mom Shannon) I was raring to go! And just in time, too, because forty little kids were waiting for me to NOT find them any fossils.