June 28, 2023 by Don Gentle
I know the four-week parents have heard this a bit, but I love the mornings here at High Rocks! The cool air in the 60s each morning is what does it the most. I must be honest the calm and quiet that is the morning might be a little why I like it too. In the past, most days I would make a cup of coffee and take a brief moment with my dog, Barley, on the deck. We would enjoy the peace while I tried not to busy my mind with too much about camp, but rather the moment. Our new golden addition (Biscuit) has changed my plans a little. At eight months old, she’s not interested in quiet. In fact, she likes to run out into the middle of the front lawn and start barking. I’ve never had a dog that barked a lot. For my sins, Biscuit has changed all of that. I make myself nearly laugh out loud because I swear with every bark she is saying “HEY GUYS! WHERE ARE YOU? I AM READY TO PLAY!!! GUYS! GUYS???” Anyhow, I do still love the moments, but it is just a little different than it has been.
Once the dogs are fed, I usually hit a few emails and then get ready for my morning meeting. We have an early morning meeting with a small team most mornings around 7:30 am. The stroll with Barley and Biscuit in tow has been a little different as well. We eventually make it to the dining hall. I like to stop in to see the kitchen crew to check out if there may be anything lovely that might be ready. Today was scratch-made biscuits. I love a warm biscuit with my coffee. If I can find the strawberry jam, even better! I typically meet back up with Zoob at this point. I head off to the coffee pot for just a touch more and then settle in for a quick overview of the day. We talk about campers, staff, daily events, office tasks, and plans on the horizon. We do it all for those wonderful young men who are not even awake yet.
Suddenly, the bell rings mid-meeting, and a few campers and staff that were leaving early on a paddling trip run over to the bell and help scream out “Good Morning High Rocks” to the awake masses. This morning there was even an orchestrated reply from one cabin. Calmness then turns into excitement, and even a little chaos as a new day begins at High Rocks, and boy is it going to be amazing!
It certainly was an amazing day! The boys played hard as the cool morning warmed up to almost hot. Not quite, but if you were active, it was hotter than you like. Nobody was complaining, it just meant the lake felt even better. The pictures tell it all! You should see a number of Hawian-themed shirts out there today in honor of Waikiki Wednesday! You may also see a few staff that have gone “contra” to the event and gone “Wolf Wednesday.” The wolf shirts are something out of a local fair airbrush event. Be sure to check them out.
Along with another whitewater paddling trip, there were two rock climbing trips, two hikes, and a group on the high ropes course today. The boys get so excited about their activities and trips. It’s all about learning skills. We will talk about how that transfers to other great things in life later on.
Outpost, Windswept, Sprucepine, and Flattop headed out for their cabin overnights. It should be fun to hear the stories when they come marching back in tomorrow morning. The rest of the guys enjoyed some rope swing and waterslide time, games on the field, and even some dodgeball in the gym.
And to think it is only the third day of camp…