As many of you know, today is the first day of Fall. While many campers have been back to school for almost a month now, it is official. Summer is officially over. It may not look or feel the part outside (at least not here in Grand Rapids, MI) but fall is here.
This only means that the end of camp blues have begun to sink in and the only thing keeping us all going are the memories and stories that me made this summer at camp.
I served this summer at Camp Ao-Wa-Kiya in Shelby Michigan. This was the 8th summer I have spent at Ao-Wa-Kiya, and my 5th year as a full summer intern. As many of you know as well, this is also where I interned spring of 2017. I was hyped up for camp for a long while. This camp holds a special place in my heart and in my mind. I will forever be grateful to the staff there and people who I met and served.
Camp has always been a place to catch-up with old friend and meet new ones. This summer was no exception. I had the privilege of being a leader and role model for campers and new staff alike.
One of my fondest memories from this summer is really simple and may seem trivial to many. I was able to drive the camp van with campers in it. The first reaction I had was, “Wait, what? I finally made it!”. It takes a lot of trust from the full-time staff to hand the keys over to someone and give them the responsibility for the lives of ≤ 15 elementary age campers. This showed me that they have a great amount of trust with me. Honestly, it was one of the best experiences of this summer.
I always look forward to seeing these people and impacting the lives of campers every summer. It is fulfilling work. This summer I “dragged” my girlfriend to camp to serve two weeks with me. She now understands why I keep going back. Every summer is an adventure and I can’t wait for the next one.