The strangeness of 2012 weather has continued into this week. Over recent summers, the norm for the first week of June has been a steady approach to the all-out sweltering heat of mid-July. Highs are already in the upper 90s, and that Southern humidity has already settled in to stay. The air is heavy, the nights are slightly cool, but still sweat inducing. This week has been an absolute dream. Highs are in the mid to upper 80s, and lows at night are in the upper 50s. Go out at any time of the day–it feels great. You could even manage in long sleeves for some of these days. The summer is a joy for all of us. We love the work we do and the relationships that we form. But throw perfect weather into the mix, and you’ve got a recipe for paradise.
The week began with more of the storms that began at the end of last week. It was storming Sunday evening as campers were arriving. It adds an interesting element to the check-in process to have thunder rumbling and rain falling all around. It adds a sense of urgency to getting to your cabin. Now, not only does a sprint to your cabin help ensure you getting the bed you hoped for, it also may keep your outfit for the dance from getting wet and mildewed. The rain also does something to the staff that works parking lot. Every check-in, half the Activity Staff is stationed on the parking lot, helping cars to park in an orderly fashion. We do our best to get as many cars in the parking lot safely, so as few as possibly have to wait. Drivers don’t always realize the good intentions of our tight parking, so it can sometimes become a game of convincing drivers to go into the spots we appropriate.
Parking lot duty, for the most part, is a pretty hot, thankless job. You get to be the first to schmooze with the campers–which is a lot of fun–but you are also standing on a large black surface, usually in direct summer sunlight. I guess that’s part of the reason our parking lot staff tends to go loopy should the rain come down. Maybe it’s the steam rising up off the blacktop from fresh rain. Maybe it’s getting your clothes soaked in the downpour. Whatever it is, the rain gets the staff more lively on the parking lot. Emma, our craft director began dancing in middle of the parking lot, in between parking cars. This was her first day on parking lot, and she was a little timid. Ellis, who is normally a Resident Counselor, but worked as support staff this week, also did parking lot for the first time. Both had a hard time standing their ground, encouraging cars to park tight enough to allow for as many as possible. There were a lot of nervous looks and flinches.
Later, the rain came harder, and we had some pretty loud storms. The rain poured down pretty hard. The Elementary Arts camp had begun a banner during a round of Messy Games, where they threw water balloons filled with paint on a banner. There were grand plans to take the banner, bombarded by paint, and have everyone in the camp sign it. Unfortunately, the banner was not taken down before the rain came down, and most of the paint was washed off the banner. The next morning we woke to find a tree had fallen on a shed near the Tabernacle housing a few of our boats. It only caused minor damage to the boats under the the roof, but the shed will be pretty unusable once the boats get out from under it.
It is interesting to see how the natural powers all around us can shape our days and even our behavior. We so often think we have a good bit of control over our day to day life and even our emotions. But, a nice day can completely change things around. A hard rain storm can reroute the plans we were originally locked into. This world that surrounds us can knock things down, raise things up, and make us see things completely differently. We try to order it as well as we can, but there are times when we are out of our league in the control department. This can be pretty stressful, but it can also be pretty liberating too. We can feel the burden of trying to keep everything in order, and maybe sometimes we should. But, it’s raining outside the windows with buckets of water and winds like you haven’t felt in quite a while. How long’s it been since you played in the rain?
Be in prayer for our staff and campers, as well as our weekend camps: Mom/Dad and Me and Campamento Espiritu.