07/22/02: So the new project is in New Hampshire, at Camp Wabasso, a Girl Scout camp. It is very different than being at Trail Blazers; we live in the lodge with electricity and walls and all that good modern technological stuff! Being camp staff is certainly different than maintenance staff, too. It's pretty fun working with the kids, but it can be a challenge to keep them interested and to stay patient with the bratty ones. But for the most part, the girls are great, I made some camper friends pretty quickly. They were the 9 and 10 year olds, and they are really sweet.
Our job at camp is to be program staff. So we decide on programs for each day, one arts and crafts, one game/physical activity. That part seems to go over well with both the campers and the counselors. We've done things like make paper and the wacky olympics. It's so strange to "work" all day without doing anything like building or whatever. I for one got used to having goals like "build this shelter" or "rake this smallcamp" to be accomplished by the end of the day, but now we just get up and hang out with kids all day. Oh boy, and the dining hall. That is an experience! The volume level can get deafening, especially at dinner, when the kids are all keyed up. There are many songs and little games they all play and sing all throughout the meal. My least favorite one was one of the camper favorites, called Bob the Can, sung to the tune of Barbara Ann by the Beach Boys. Bob the Can, he's not a man, Bob the Can...he's got me scraping and a-stacking, stacking and a-scraping, Bob the Can. Hoo boy is that song annoying after the fifth time in an hour!
In other news...I am in Texas right now! Half the team got called the day we left for New Hampshire, so only six of us made the drive and started the project. I got put on the call list the first day we were there but didn't actually get called for another week. Just enough time to get settled and used to things and stuff. So I took four four flights to get here--Boston to Cincinnati to New Orleans to Dallas to San Antonio. What a long day. We've been here in San Antonio for four days now, and we still don't really know what's going on. They've had massive flooding all over South Central Texas, and that's what we're here to help with. The San Antonio stuff seems to be pretty much under control, but the water in Corpus Christi hasn't gone down yet, so we're hoping to go down there. The team I'm working with is doing damage assessment. Most of them are from the other unit and so I didn't know any of them before. But they're all really great and we're having a fun time here. We've gone out on the town a little bit, seen some Riverwalk life. It is really hot here and oh how we love our air conditioners.
Our assignment is for three weeks, so I'll be here for awhile, and hopefully soon we'll get busy with work. But until then, lots of tv and naps are in my future! Oh, and driving all over the place.
Today our group went out to Uvalde County to assess damage. The girl I was driving with, our car got stuck in some mud on this little back road. Like, really stuck. Up to the fender on one side stuck. Some wonderful folks came by with a big red pickup and saved us. In the process I got sprayed with mud from head to toe, literally. Today was definitely an adventure. Good times here in Texas!