As I headed towards arts ‘n crafts my thoughts were full of survivor night. I was amazed at what these young kids could accomplish and the responsibility they could take on. Incredible. But then again, maybe we babied our kids too much, I thought. I didn’t know. Heck. Just a couple of generations ago kids the age of sixteen would be practically running a farm. Did that make it right though?
I arrived in arts ‘n crafts and the place was a bee hive of colorful activity. Barb was providing instructions to the campers. The boys were working on painting big colorful fish of all shapes and sizes and colors. I noticed a few fish already ‘swimming’ above us as they dangled from the rafters.
“When we are all done, it’s going to be a fantastic mural above us!” Barb told the boys.
“That’s gonna be so beautiful, Barb!” I said as I made my way towards the first aid kit attached to the wall. I pulled it off and set it on the office desk. I plunked my back pack onto the chair.
“It’s so fun. We are going to create an undersea world.”
I cranked open the kit and found very few items missing. I replenished the supplies with what I had in my back pack,
“Hey Barb. Got a question for you.”
“What is this survival night all about?”
Barb looked over her shoulder to see who was close by. The coast was clear. She turned back to me.
“Ohhhh boy.” She whistled, crossed her arms and leaned against the door frame. “That’s a fun night that the LIT 2’s spend on Little Indian Island. They get dropped off before bedtime and picked up before breakfast.”
“Awh it’s not so bad.” Barb laughed.
“Really? Cuz it doesn’t sound safe if you ask me.”
“Nah. It’s pretty safe. The counselors check the island when they drop the kids off. Make sure no drunken partyers or furry creatures are occupying it. Then they give the kids a pack of matches, a couple of tarps, a roll of TP, water bottles, and a whistle.”
“What good is the whistle?”
“Well the LIT counselors stay on the tiny island right next to Little Indian, so they can guard them and come and evacuate them as needed.”
“Oh I gotcha. That’s reassuring. But what about rain or cold?”
“They check the weather before they send them. They pick a mild night, with no rain in the forecast. And they can wrap themselves in the tarps for heat if they need it.”
“I guess it sounds like a pretty tame survival experience.” I said as I added some more band aids.
“Now they come back completely exhausted from the lack of sleep and mosquito bites but they are so proud to have been able to make it through the night. We build some self confidence in a pretty secure environment.”
“Well…” I said as I closed up the first aid kit, “They have my complete respect. I’m not sure that I could survive a night like that!”
“Hey Anne, don’t sell yourself so short. You have survived sleeping on that camp mattress for six days, so sleeping on a rocky island wouldn’t be so bad.”
She spoke the truth.