They CAN Do It. It Just Takes Longer.

Another busy day here up on The Rocks.  The climbers took off to South Carolina to a secret spot we don’t like to talk about.  It was toasty, but the crag is mostly in the shade and they didn’t get stormed out.  Canoers took a new crew to The Green River. 

I sure have seen a lot out of these boys in just a week and a half. Those Mini I boys have been on a wonderful ride lately.  I really enjoy seeing them head out on trips, build skills, and even make it to all their activities. They are mostly on time, but sometimes a snack overrules the need to get there as quickly as they should.  It’s all part of the plan. As a parent, I must stop myself every time I see that my girls need help or even when they ask for it. I know they can do it, but there are times it makes the process a whole lot faster (like getting to school on time), but it also creates habits of doing things for my kids when I know they can do it themselves. Sometimes I don’t even think about it.  What I have learned is that if I do for them that which they can do for themselves, I am teaching my children they can’t do it. It’s not easy, but I must catch myself and let them struggle through it or at least try to figure it out… Even if we are going to be late.

Speaking of the Mini boys.  Lakeside and Foxhollow were super-excited about heading out for Chill Night.  This is the evening program where the boys head down to the world-famous Sliding Rock in Pisgah National Forest (chill part I) and then head over to the infamous Dolly’s Dairy Bar (chill part II), where my good friend Robert has created a number of special “summer camp” ice cream flavors.  Each camp in the area has its own special mix.  High Rocks’ flavor is called High Rocks Arctic Slide.  I believe it is vanilla-based ice cream with peanut butter balls and a fudge swirl?  I can’t remember because I like the Rockbrook Chocolate Explosion better (don’t tell anyone).  Anyhow, Chill Night is just what the camp director ordered for these warm days we have had lately.  The chill part III is the smooth ride home after all the fun. The boys were just rolling in as I was finishing up my blog.

Again, our four-week boys are just warming up. Their muscle memory has brought them up to speed fast. In contrast to the Mini I guys, there are only nine first-year campers in the four-week session. Several of these boys started in one of our two-week sessions. They figured out the ropes in the shorter session and then decide they wanted a little more. Most of these guys have a sense of the day-to-day of camp, and they are able to focus their energies on some of the activities and skills. The four-week is more of an expedition than a sprint, so the guys find a way to pace themselves. My hope is that some of the Mini guys find that desire just as our four-week boys have done.

Speaking of four-week boys. The three-day hike that left yesterday checked in to me.  They are having a blast but are soaking wet.  They come out of the woods at Mount Pisgah tomorrow. We will be ready to pick them…except for the smell.  Can’t wait to see them. I like that our trip leaders can sneak me a quick text on the sly to let me know all is well.  It should be some good stories.

This evening I had a moment with the boys of Hillside and Connestee as I took a moment at their evening activity. It was super fun to watch it unfold as the boys were super-charged to enjoy one of the best evening programs of all time, CANOE FILL-UPS!  Arm a few guys with paddles and buckets, then give them a canoe. You then charge them with the order of trying to sink all the other canoes.  The staff jump in after a little while just to mix it up.  They typically play the role of The Kraken as they come up from nowhere to sink your boat or pull you into the lake.  They will sleep well tonight…

Just another fun day at High Rocks.  Keep writing those letters and encourage your boys to write back.

All the best,

Don Gentle

Today’s Pictures – The internet is painfully slow tonight. There are still about 80 more pictures coming up SLOWLY as I published at 9:40 pm tonight. Maybe wait nad have coffee with pictures in the morning :).