This is how the summer started. A long to-do list written out over coffee & bagels. When it was still cold enough to wear leggings, wool socks and touques as we went about cleaning and organizing the camp. When all we could was speculate about how the next 12 weeks would unfold, how interview personalities would mesh together and attempting to anticipate what problems would arise.
This is how the summer ended. Piles of (dirty) clothes, miss-matched socks and half empty bottles of sunscreen and big spray. Crumpled pieces of papers with notes full of reminders to "tell counsellors to stop eating cheese from the walk-in" and "pick up construction paper, canoe paddles, ketchup and cinnamon." Lingering goodbye hugs between people who 12 weeks ago would have passed each other in a crowd without a second glance.
And in between the beginning and the end there were a lot of laughs and a few tears. Because sometimes, when you need to make an emergency trip to town to get a blender (true story) and two counsellors quit in the same week right before a week with 45 campers you just have to laugh. And then cry from stress because while you're laughing another counsellor wanders into the office to let you know a camper is refusing to go to bed or is homesick. Or both, depending on the day. No matter how slowly the day seemed to go by it did end, and there always seemed to be just enough time between camper lights out and counsellor bedtime to stargaze or eat copious amounts of chocolate. Or both, again depending on the day. Outside camp life there were breaks spent getting dressed up to go to Wal-Mart followed by laying in bed for hours catching up on Big Brother.
I feel so lucky to have experienced this summer. Looking back there were moments that were so intricately perfect. And more than that I'm (98%) at peace with the ending. I've still got some "I wonder if..." and "Maybe if..." thoughts but I'm okay with that. Things will happen as they're meant to happen and I've got a lot of faith they'll happen at the perfect time.