Camp started on Monday and I am moving out of my little bamboo forest oasis on Saturday. Moving temporarily back to my parents’ farm, where I will either share a room with Heidi, who sleeps like an open-mouthed angel (it’s the curly hair), and a life-size plastic skeleton, or Eamon the Squinch and I will sleep in the mudroom. Both have their pluses and cons. The whole proposition does, but so it is.
Anyhow, camp started, and so my life happens in places called the Stopping Stump, the Story Garden, the Picnic Place, and the Deep Woods,and time has names like Singing, Forts, and Popsicle Time. And before you can ask, Jesslyn, this week is Woodland Elves and yes Medieval Merrymakers is coming later in the summer. Camp is a place where I stepped in a cow pie on Tuesday, and everyone is still talking about it. Where all day they ask me when Popsicle Time will be (it is always the last thing of the day), and yet hate that the week is so short. Where the occasional kid goes home plastered with manure. Where I get to see Ian, whom I used to nanny, lose his first tooth and walk around all day glowing. Where I get to hear my brother sing.
And speaking of singing, these kids can sing! We can do three part rounds that hold together, which means that even though I anchor one part and my husky-voiced brother valiantly tries to sing in kid-range to anchor another, a few five to eight year olds are holding down the third part. It happens every week, but it still makes me happy. This is my theory on singing: get ’em young and you got ’em. This applies to lots of things, I guess. I do have ulterior motives with camp. Such as that kids should sing, build forts, climb things, get lost in the woods, get bit by mosquitoes, get dirty, play imaginatively, make messy art projects, take warm eggs from pecking chickens, get dirtier, swing, be expected to be kind to everything from ferns to puppies to boys, and be subject to the mysterious flow of the untold plans of the day. And if that means feeding them their holy popsicles every day even in the rain, so be it.