The Katydids are Coming!
July 18, 2017 by Dan Noland
This morning was my favorite kind at High Rocks. It began surprisingly cool–64°, so that, as the sun rose, mists wisped eastward along the lake from the dam and coves into our waterfront areas. What a contrast to the splashing, paddling, sailing, casting and general hubbub filling the lake a couple of hours later!
The Minis have fit right in already. Though a few were too excited to sleep all the way until the wake-up bell, they were quiet. In the breakfast line, it was impossible to see any hesitance from them, as the scrambled eggs and sausage, grits, yoghurt, cereal and fruit called to all of us.
The canoeists were the first of several trips, out before breakfast and on their way to the Green River. Talking to the guys when they got back gives a wonderful perspective on a camper’s view of going down a river. Each of them appreciated what it means to know how to guide a boat on moving water, which is no easy feat. The kayakers were proud of doing a “combat” roll for the first time, to maintain control. The experience of dropping into a rapid, with the acceleration, louder sounds and loads of white water in your face, is one they will never forget and one that will send them back on many future river trips.
At the other end of the river spectrum, a group of swimmers went tubing on the French Broad, from near the headwaters, where it has a modest flow. Plopped in their tubes, spinning leisurely, they had the time to notice a few fish swimming along with them and water striders and spiders scooting across the surface nearby.
Today, we had tacos for lunch, and, as the rumor spread like lighting around camp at noon, the excitement level built! It is amazing to see just how much taco meat, beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, guacamole, salsa and sour cream is piled onto trays, many for a second time, some for thirds, fourths, fifths and even sixths! Cleaning the dining room afterward is almost as amazing, but, most astounding of all is that, at the end of rest hour, a mere sixty minutes later, the dining room experiences another long, eager line for snacks of animal crackers, apples, ice water and whatever else is available. Perhaps you aren’t so surprised that your guy has a hollow leg.
As I type this blog, evening activities are calming down and yet another snack is being devoured outside the dining hall on the slope we call Mystic Hill. Then we will trickle back to our cabins, tired but satisfied, to straighten them up and clean ourselves up after another gratifying day. A bit later, after the bell has rung Lights Out and Sumner has blown Taps, we will get the special treat of listening as a vanguard of katydids performs an overture to what will become an insect chorus worth hearing yourselves.