Actually I can’t complain too much about the sleeping arrangements. While I got less sleep than any of the guys (I think some girls got less than me) I did get more sleep this year than any previous camp. The dorms had huge attic exhaust fans, which really helped with the heat. One night I even considered zipping my sleeping bag, but then just rolled over and went to sleep. I am usually the last to go to sleep and was teh first up in the guys dorms all week. That’s just how things go at camp though. I got about 5-6 hours a night though, which is way more than the 2-4 hours I’m use to at camp. This left plenty of energy for fun at camp, not that a lack of sleep ever kept me from the fun. We played plenty of great games, so I figure I’ll kick off this series by talking about some of them, and a few other things we did in the “fun” category.
Soccer is a lot of fun by itself, but we add to the excitement by using a 42″ ball. I’m not sure how many goals there were on each side, but getting such a large ball moving is tough, stopping it is even tougher. The highlight reel (if I had remembered to use the video camera) would surely include several of the smaller students being completely run over by the ball. Before you feel too bad for them, I let my own kids play with the ball and it was bigger than most of them.
You can’t have camp without swimming. We did that every day. The pool was the nicest of any camp we ever used, between the bunks, pool, and cafeteria I really want to look into this camp again. Mostly the students just enjoyed chilling in the pool, splashing, and generally having fun. One day we went on a very short hike to a nice swimming hole in the river than ran along the camp. Students were given a choice between swimming in the river or in the pool. In the end most went to the pool, but the river was actually really nice. It was probably nicer since the adults in the river had much fewer students. The other really fun thing we did was a midnight (actually it was 2-3am) swim on the last night of camp. I cracked out about 150 glow bracelets and we had a great party. So worth the loss of 3 hours sleep.
Ultimate Frisbee is a super fun game, made even better by camp. If you aren’t familiar, the basic rules are:
- Two Teams
- Football like end zones
- Football like “throw off”
- Once you catch the Frisbee you have 3 steps to stop or throw the Frisbee
- Incomplete, out of bounds, or interception/knockdown results in a change of possession
There are several more rules, but that should give you some sense of how it plays. Of course, we can’t leave well enough alone, so the last 10-15 minutes was played with a frozen (but quickly defrosting) cow tongue. It is amazing how the students get into that. If you were wondering, you can’t really toss a tongue like a Frisbee, more like a bola since the tongue gets kind of stretched out.
Again, with the giant soccer ball. I was surprised at how far the students could kick the ball, but more impressive was the manner in which some of the students were taken down. One was running for home when the ball completely bowled him over, another was running for home when someone ran into him with the ball. he tried jumping, but the ball just bounced him into the air, then he supermanned off the ball. I made sure he was ok before laughing … well I at least didn’t laugh to hard till I knew he was ok.
Three teams play at a time, running across an open field to try and put tickets into a bucket. The only thing stopping them, a tired group of adults looking for a bit pf payback holding tube socks with a cup of flour. The adults had to throw then recover the tube socks. Once a student was hit they had to return to the starting line before they could try and cross to the buckets again. Several of the students developed some great strategies to avoid getting hit, including sacrificing slower players as shields and jumping over the thrown socks. In the end I think I needed some O2.