Saturday July 23, 2011 – 5:15pm – Main Chapel @ Camp Hardtner – Pollock, LA
So we’re sitting in the Camper’s Lounge and it’s right after our movie ended. We decided on doing a matinee so that we didn’t lose the entire evening. Watched The Truman Show. After the counselors did a hilariously creative upfront, they divided the campers into boys and girls to start figuring out who was on each team for the upcoming game. Amidst the din of noise and organized chaos, I just sat on the couch in the back and was soaking it all in. And for some reason I happened to glance to one side to see Nico, one of the counselors, painting faces for one of the teams, and suddenly I was struck with this feeling of happiness.
Happiness on a very immediate level because of what was going on. But on a deeper level I realized yet again that these counselors were carrying on the Hardtner spirit and traditions. They also used to be my campers when I was a counselor. Just knowing that I played some small part in carrying on the Hardtner spirit, passing it onto these young adults, and seeing them pass it on to today’s campers was awesome. It was a heaven moment for me. It also makes me thankful for all the campers and counselors who came before me and those who were at camp the same time as I was. Without them, I would not be here.
Of course when I think about the future anytime I’m here, it makes me a little sad. I never know if this is my last time or not. I never know if I’ll ever see these people ever again. Camp itself has to move on. It has to breathe and live. It has to evolve and grow. If I keep a stranglehold on it, then it will cease to be the place it was meant to be. But this place is in my mind and on my heart. I can literally close my eyes, and no matter where i’m at, visualize myself at Hardtner and walk around the entire camp as well as go into every room in every building. A great way to end this entry is to revisit the Hardtner reflection that I wrote, which I’ll be reading at the healing service tonight.