This week in camp 8/23-28

Ah, retreat season has settled on us like the leaves that will soon be drifting towards the ground with no particular hurry. My office is begining to look livable again. I have file about half of the pile of paper that began collecting as soon as summer started. There is floor space enough to vacuum, and I have space for guests to sit on my couch. All in all, my office probably looks about as good as it ever has (which still isn’t saying much).

Though the week hasn’t had anything very earth shattering going on, we do have some earth breaking taking place. The maintenance staff are hard at work, digging ditches for our new prayer labyrinth. The ditches will be filled with mulch, where we will plant bushes and fowers to line the path. The labytinth is located at the end of the soccer field farthest from the lake. I am looking forward to walking it many times in the future.

I played on our new disc golf course during my lunch break this week and made two realizations: (1) I’m still not very good at disc golf (I shot a 15 on 18 holes), and (2) The ticks have not gone away yet. If anything, they’ve gotten stronger. I know that this is likely, so when I played, I made sure to check my legs frequently. I made it through 8 holes without a tick citing, but upon picking up my disc after hole 8, I noticed that it had a lot of tiny dots on it. It wasn’t long before I had tiny dots all over my shoes and ankles as well. These tiny dots are now larger, itchier red dots on my ankle, and this just makes me long for fall more and more.

Yesterday towards the end of the day, I decided to do some scouting for my upcoming, “Lewis and Clark, Lakeshore Property Exploration Adventure,” where I will go out into Lakeshore’s property with everything I need strapped to my back to explore the part of our property we know very little about. I took Little Red (our trusty camp truck, for those who may not know) to a few places where I knew there would be logging roads on the back of our property, so I could familiarize myself with the area and know what it looks like. I walked a grown up trail with a lot of small pine trees a little ways down, just to make sure I was in the right place. It was very exciting just to see this new part of camp that, despite my many years here, I knew nothing about. I could tell I was on a high point, but the trees made it where I could not tell how high. I keep following the road, and it gradually opened up. I found a very old refridgerator (probably at least 30-40 years old), and that was just walking a short ways down the trail. I wanted to just keep following the trail and start the trip right then, but it would be dark soon, so I turned back. Another thing that I was appreciating about this side of the property was that I had not noticed any ticks to this point. If this was what the back side of the property was going to be like, I needed to start spending more time there. Of course, when I got into Little Red, I noticed that I was covered in dust sized ticks, not much different than what I had had on the disc golf course. This really is kind of scary when you think about it. Lakeshore has about 800 acres, and this week, I’ve walked maybe 15-20 of those, yet I’ve picked up literally hundreds of ticks. There must be millions, maybe billions spread out over the entire property. With that in mind, I am clearly decided upon waiting until the temperature and, as a result, the tick population both decrease for the year (Unless I manage to pick up some animal companion like an anteater that will just eat up all the ticks. I wonder if I can get an anteater at Petco). I am still very excited about mapping out this part of our property that very few people know.

Adventure will make you do some wild things, I guess. I am really still just holding myself back from going out into the woods right now. The smarter side of me knows that it would be an itchy, frustrating, hot experience for me right now, that will be much more pleasant in late September/early October, and yet there is a part of me that just wants to go running out there. This is a balance, I guess we have to keep with everything in our lives. We must be smart enough to take care of ourselves, but adventurous enough to live and grow and make discoveries. So many times you have to force yourself out of a routine that is safe and comfortable to grow at all. Funny how we are forcing ourselves into those things that we dream about and seem to want so badly. I guess, on the other side of it, you could adventure so much that you have no time to process it or figure out what it means. You might wear yourself out before you have a chance to really know it and appreciate it. So, many ways we must watch ourselves. I just hope that each time my chance at adventure comes, I will know it and choose the path that takes me to something new and wonderful, no matter how much itch and frustration I have to put up with.

This weekend is a light weekend for us. We have the White family in. Please be in prayer that their stay is one that will give them rest and grow. I am excited to see some old friends. Do good everyone.

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