the long walk
I looked forward to camp for years. Once the eldest started, I wanted to go. And when it was the middle’s turn I became downright antsy—for two years—until I could go, too.
The summer before sixth grade, camp was amazing. I slept in a covered wagon. My team won the competition, though rain prevented us from sleeping in the fort to celebrate. I went rappelling. But on the morning it was time to leave we waited and waited and waited. We waited some more. No bus.
By that point I was done with camp. It’s not that I wanted to go home. I wanted my brothers. The middle was in the junior high camp and the eldest was in the high school camp. I hadn’t seen them in almost a week. I was beside myself with sibling withdrawal.
Then a few people approached our camp on foot. One of them was the eldest! I took off running. He knelt in the road and I ran straight into his arms. And I didn’t let go. So he stood up still holding me, and as they explained whatever the issue was with the bus, I wrapped myself tighter around him.
It didn’t occur to me as all the rest of the fourth, fifth and sixth graders started trudging along behind our high school chaperones that there was anything odd about the fact the eldest was still carrying me.
At the time the distance seemed enormous. Now I know the camps were only a half-mile apart, but it didn’t matter—he carried me the whole way.
This post is part of the 31 Days: Family series. Read the beginning, and see a full index of posts, here.
I have both good and bad memories from camp.
I hope the good outweigh the bad! I definitely have some not great camp memories, but the overall experience was wonderful; and I’m so grateful I was able to be a camper (and counselor) so many times.
Even though I wasn’t there, I have a precious image in my mind on that moment. What a wonderful God we serve, who would comfort you through the love of your brother! (I was so glad to have all of you back home a few hours later.)
Very true — and there probably weren’t many 14 year olds willing to carry their 10 year old sisters a half mile (or maybe at all)!