Yesterday, an old camp friend posted this picture on Facebook:
It’s a camp cabin photo from goodness knows what year, but an awesome quote went along with it that I must share: “Thanks, ladies, for teaching me how to shave my legs.”
That one statement really sums up what camp is all about. Camp is loaded with coming-of-age memories, and when I reconnect with these ladies through social media, I am instantly bonded to them because we did things like shaved our legs for the first time together. These ladies own some of the best memories from my childhood, and I adore each and every one of them.
So…this leads me to the real point of this blog today. Over the last week, two inexplicable freak accidents occurred at two different Jewish overnight summer camps. The first accident was at my former camp, GUCI (Goldman Union Camp Institute), where this cabin photo was taken. Lightening struck three children in an open athletic field during a storm. All three children survived, but I can’t even imagine something like that happening when I was there. Worse yet, I can’t imagine being the parent getting that phone call.
The second accident was even more bizarre and ended in a fatality. At Camp Tawonga in Northern California, a big oak tree suddenly, without any warning, fell over and landed on a counselor. Two others were injured, but this beautiful young college-aged woman, who was the camp art specialist, died. I am ill at ease over this thought. How could this even happen? It is impossible to wrap your brain around.
My heart is with these camps as they must be so shaken up over the incidents. One minute, it was business as usual….campers were doing things like learning how to shave their legs for the first time. The next minute, tragedy struck.
I have been thinking about these incidents a lot, and so I’m using this blog today to send out a prayer to these camps and all of the people affected by them. The song “I Say a Little Prayer for You” expresses how I am feeling, so click HERE to go to Youtube to listen to the Aretha Franklin recording of the song and perhaps…just maybe…there will be some camp girls learning to shave their legs this summer, too, and that memory will be carried with them throughout their lifetimes, as well. That’s what I want them to remember…not the tragic incidents. That is my prayer for all of them.