Last night, I was really thinking of my daughter away at camp. I am living through her this week and a flood of memories from my own camp experiences are bouncing through my mind at warp speed. Last night, in particular, I knew she was experiencing her first camp Shabbat. Camp Shabbat is solely responsible for what made me Jewish, and I knew it would be just as meaningful for her.
A camp Shabbat is like none other. At her camp and at many others, the campers dress all in white. My camp didn’t do this, but I think there is something really special about it. Combing through the camp’s pictures this morning, there was one photo of her at a microphone. Her back is towards the camera, but the message is loud and clear. She had a part in the service, which will only add to what she will get from the evening. I know that after that photo was taken, she headed to the dining hall, ate Shabbat dinner and rocked out to a super energetic and long song session. I know this, because this is the common camp Shabbat formula.
As an adult, when I talk to other grown ups about camp Shabbat, the response is always the same. Happy smiles filled with nostalgia and recollections of the singing spread across their faces. It is why I became a song leader and even why I learned to play guitar…so I could continue the camp feeling throughout the year.
I am thrilled that my daughter is having these experiences and am wondering how and if it will change my little girl when she comes home. I know that it had a huge impact on my life, and I am feeling pretty confident by these pictures I’ve been seeing that she will be changed for the better.
My song of the day is pure rock and roll. “All in White” by the Vaccines has nothing to do with Shabbat, but I am paying homage today to an “all in white” camp Shabbat. So, click HERE to go to Youtube to hear the song. Shabbat Shalom to all who celebrate. I think I’ll need to play some Shabbat camp songs on my guitar today in celebration of a really great memory for me and a new reality for my daughter.