December 1, 2009
I suppose some kids looked forward to going to summer camp. We dreaded it like the plague.
Every summer we got shipped off to Camp Calvary for boys grades third and up. Things quickly always turned into a “Lord Of The Flies” scenario with the oldest kids ruling fiefdoms they carved out for themselves during the week. It could be pretty tense if you found yourself on the bottom of the food chain.
Mom always send a quilt for us to sleep under which was kinda weird since it was the middle of August, but I kept it pulled over my head and sweated all night because that was far better than having the rats that were running up and down the rafters (I was always on a top bunk next to the rafters) from running up and down me all night.
Every afternoon we would walk barefoot down a rocky road to the creek to have a swim. It was a pretty scary walk since we knew that waiting for us in the water were snakes. The older kids would take turns standing on the bank and watching out for them. I still remember the time a water moccasin began circling around a kid, he grabbed it by the tail and slung it away from him and into a crowd of other kids which sent everyone screaming out of the creek. Going for an afternoon swim was just like participating in the Baton Death March.
Camp Calvary did have a snack bar that was open every day and you could buy ALL THE CANDY YOU WANTED! Of course, poor money management usually made that pleasure come to an end the first day.
We drove by Camp Calvary this weekend on our way back home for Thanksgiving. They’ve made a lot of improvements since our camping days… but I bet it doesn’t put the fear of God in you like it did back in the old days. We were always thankful just to make it out alive.