The phone rang at 4:30 A.M. yesterday morning.  It was Rob. The campers were on their way to the airport. What’s my flight information again? We told him. He said thanks and hung up. We wondered why the transport people didn’t have the information, since we had emailed it to them. We drifted off back to sleep. 20 minutes later, the phone rang again. It was Rob. USAir, right? Yes, dear. He hung up again. I couldn’t go back to sleep. The calls had not just shattered my sleep, but my nerves. Was there a problem with the ticket?  Had the flight been canceled? Would he make his connection in Phoenix? All needless worries – the flight was there, he got on it, made his connection, got home on time.

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I meet him at the baggage check – tall, sunburnt, handsome, wearing a camp t-shirt and dogtag.  He seems to have grown another inch.  His lips are severely chapped. His first announcement: he now has size 15 feet, since the size 14 shoes we bought him for camp had been hurting his feet all week.

He is actually talkative. He tells me about the camp activities, some friends he made, his counselors. He was the second-oldest, and second-tallest camper there; he is now 6 inches taller than his counselor from last summer, who was there again.  He beat all the other campers and several of the counselors at a game where you wear a harness with a bungee cord attached to the back, and run as far as you can along a track and stick a velcro bean bag as far as you can reach, before the bungee cord pulls you back on your butt.  He also won the award for the “most-improved rifleman.”  Yikes!  I thought was doing archery!

We ask him who he went to the last-night banquet with. He says that is privileged information. But he finally tells us her name. 🙂

He wants to go back next year as “crew.”  That means working a support staff member for 5 weeks. This is probably a good choice – I don’t think he has the social skills to be a counselor – but the crew get the weekends to do fun camp stuff, and during the camp weeks they work in the kitchens, or maintenance and supply.

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Now his stuff is scattered all over the family room – three pair of absolutely huge shoes, a pile of dirty laundry, and his duffel bag. He shows us his rifleman certificate. He is doing his own laundry, and willingly clears his stuff up when asked. He has already raided the refrigerator. It’s good to have him home!

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