As previously stated, I’m working for the fourth summer as the Camp Director of Now-Church’s two-week camp in Boondocks, New England. (There are a lot of boondocks in New England, and sometimes I like to pretend I’m more private about identifiers on the internet than I actually am.) This is an area where, if I stand in the middle of the path up to the lodge–or, reputedly, take the phone on a kayak out to the middle of the pond–I might get a bar or two of “service” on my phone, at which point I can maybe text someone and check my email, but actually answering the email is probably a little much to expect, and blogging is Right. Out. I thought I was going to be all clever and write a couple of blogposts in advance, scheduling them to post automatically at two-day intervals, but that didn’t happen, for reasons which will be discussed in another post.
It was a good week, though. Just when I start to get comfortable with a Now Church tradition and think I’ve got enough of a handle on it to run it with a minimum of tweaking and wheel-reinvention, someone or something comes along to change things up a little. This time the someones were the two primary youth group volunteers, who had the bright idea that, even though this two week experience has always been a day camp for elementary-aged children, the teens who help staff it like it so much, that maybe we should add an overnight teen camp concurrently. So we did. Happily, these two volunteers (and one who is quickly becoming another “primary” one) valiantly took on most if not all of the planning and implementation of teen camp, leaving me charge of the other kids (and figuring out how to plug which teens in as rotating staff).
It worked really quite well, especially for a pilot-run, and although there was kind of a camp-wide, overtired kerfuffle among the teens last night, even that was pretty containable and I was left thinking what a great group of kids I’ve had to work with ever since the day I set foot in this church for the first time. I’m pretty tired (and I really don’t think I’m the only one!), and we have one more week to go, but having a weekend with each of us in our own beds with sheets instead of sleeping bags will probably help a lot, and I’m looking forward to seeing some of the same smiling faces at camp on Monday morning.
Last night, though, as I mentioned, everybody was kind of on their last legs. I mean everybody, too, not just the teens. So the men set up the couches in same-direction-facing rows and set up the screen and the video projector and (at the request of most of the guys who, inexplicably, wanted a “chick flick”), watched Mama Mia! I don’t know that that movie would have been my first choice (it was pretty morally bankrupt . . . at least from the perspective of Judeo-Christian morals), but it was certainly entertaining, and I guess I decided that although Pierce Brosnan probably should’ve had someone else sing his songs for him, ABBA’s music is less obnoxious when Meryl Streep sings it. Especially in those platform shoes.
The main impression I came away with, honestly, was that I sure hope, when I’m Meryl Streep’s age, I still have her figure and flexibility. I was just pretty much in awe of her the whole time. She’s got pipes, a flatter stomach than mine, and that lady can dance. Plus, she just looked like she was having a blast the whole time. I was thinking about this and remembered when I went to my first Emmylou Harris concert (more about her later), courtesy of Uncle Phil, and how I blogged about how she was my new 60+ hero and how I hoped I’d look that good at her age. Then I thought . . . is this what happens when you approach middle age? You stop identifying with the hott young things in the music and movie world and start aspiring to being like sexy 60-year-olds? I think some people might think that’s kind of sad, but it sort of goes along with my lately and “longly” fake-nostalgia for an era in which I was barely alive (more about that later)–apparently I really do wish I had my coming of age in the sixties or seventies. And in any event, I hope that if I’m still getting new stuff thrown at me in my own sixties, I’m as graceful and sassy and funny and flexible . . . and sexy would be nice, too . . . as Meryl Streep.