smalldeer: ([gengar] flower)
bug ([personal profile] smalldeer) wrote2015-07-06 09:46 am
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We're calling the nerd hut "Arkham Comics", and it still isn't finished. But that's not bad news, really.

A few bonfires and a lot of hard work after my last entry, and we had the last big counsellors-only event of the summer. This took the form of an ice cream social and then a talent show, in which one counsellor performed in drag, one from our side of camp did the Haka (this was terrifying but we got a shout-out so I'm assuming he stood with us? anyway he got a standing ovation), and one did magic tricks and told jokes... the list went on with musical talents such as guy with piano (he was amazing), melancholy guy with guitar, melancholy guy with guitar, melancholy guy with ukulele who then surprised everybody by changing gears into hilarious guy with ukulele...

We rounded it all off with another bonfire and one counsellor got out his banjo and basically upstaged everybody. Then it was mostly stressing out the next day in the morning, and kids arriving all day.

That day has maybe been the most stressful of all of them. I've never worked with kids before, and I may even have exaggerated how confident I was at coping with them. But my fears were quickly assuaged as the first girl of our bunk to arrive revealed she was very into comics, and we proceeded to chat back and forth about the recent female Thor until the other campers arrived.

The girls are all very excited about everything we're doing on the adventure side of camp, which is great since it means we don't have to work quite so hard to get them engaged. We had a couple of homesick kids, and one girl who didn't take to swimming so well, but on the whole everyone has been great.

They even get along with the other bunks, and all the age ranges seem to be getting along and having fun. I won't say this trip is restoring my faith in humanity, because I've always had a lot of faith in it, but I will say it's restoring my faith in children. I've never been much of a fan. They're messy and moody and completely nuts. But, despite these things still being true, they're less true than I thought.

I also keep having moments where I catch myself thinking, these are good kids. The owner and the regular staff members told us this from the start, but we found it a little hard to believe. Will they be little shits? we asked each other about five times a day. The answer, luckily, is no.

They help each other and they're good to each other and you can really tell that everybody wants to get along, at least at the start. It's just our job to make sure they keep getting along after that. Some of them haven't brushed up on their manners in a while. But they are good kids.

Especially ours. We have the youngest girls and it's mostly a cruise. Other than the occasional bout of homesickness and kids not wanting to go and do activities until they're actually there doing the thing, they're all really great.

Anyway, turns out my job is most definitely the best job on camp. I get to hang out and read comics all day with the comfort of a $5000 pinball machine and a couch and a bunch of video games and DVDs. It's a momentary respite, no one stays too long, and everyone's being incredibly good about going to do outdoor activities. Honestly, I'm pleasantly surprised every day by how willing everybody is to get back out there and be active rather than stay where the screen is.

Although this might be because there's no electricity yet. It was meant to be done before the kids even arrived but it's now been a week. I'm probably less worried than the other staff members are - it's a comic book library, and there are comic books. Everyone's reading them, too, and I teach kids to draw cartoons when they're bored of reading. We have plans to have the kids paint a mural on the back wall, we're finishing up ordering the last pieces of a Marvel/DC chess set, and there are card games and D&D as backup. I don't feel like there's much to worry about.

I won't discuss the details here, but there have been a few major sources of stress lately. When I finish this job, nobody can ask me to look after kids at Six Flags ever again. That's all I'll say. But for the record, everything is still great.

This entry might seem a little disjointed because I threw it together over the course of a week for five minutes a day, but at least it's an update I guess?

I miss everybody, but I'm still having a great time. I hope everybody else is doing okay too.

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