“OK kids. Shall we meet Dad on the fishing dock?” The kids eagerly agreed.
I thanked Anita and Ryan and the kids grabbed their towels and wrapped them around their necks. They were ready to go. We headed towards the boat house. My son wanted to try fishing again. We managed to find a barely functioning fishing pole with a petrified piece of food on the hook. I also located a beat up, but still serviceable swimming vest for him and zipped it onto him. I was reminded, again, how hard it was to maintain equipment with 80 children using and abusing it.
We found my husband chilling on the fishing dock at the far end, his nose buried in a financial magazine. On the other side of the dock was a small group of counselors. A couple of them were snoozing and three of them were chatting quietly as they lay out on their towels. They waved at us as we arrived. They were enjoying their “day off” (Ha! That silly misnomer!).
We plunked down all of our belongings beside my husband. My son quickly grabbed the fishing pole and examined the dried food. Apparently…this would NOT do. He insisted on proper bait. I didn’t really relish the idea of going all the way back to the kitchen to get some left-overs, so I suggested we try finding some juicy worms in the dirt. This was acceptable.
Holding my hand, my son and I padded along the dock and into a thick patch of trees on shore. Under the cool green canopy we brushed back the upper layer of leaves and pine needles, and using our fingers dug down into the dark earth. It didn’t take us very long to find some worms. I wasn’t well prepared for this, so I had to use a short stick we found on the ground to dig deeper into the dirt. We also didn’t have a bucket with us, so my son was in charge of monitoring the worms to make sure they didn’t wander off after we had gathered them. He squealed whenever a worm attempted to make a break for it!
After I had gathered five worms, I figured that was plenty, I rested cross legged on the ground and just took it all in. My son, fully engaged in worm wrangling, the water lapping on the shore, the sound of the wind in the trees, my daughters on the far side of the dock with their feet in the water softly singing some camp song, and my husband sitting in the folding chair alternating between reading his article and checking on the girls. A small moment of peace and beauty. Sigh!
I was savoring the moment when I heard male voices approaching from behind. I peered over my shoulder to see Angus and Ben coming down the path from the main house. They stopped on the path when they saw my son and myself sitting on the ground.
“Whatcha doin’?” Angus asked.
I held up my dirty hands and wiggled my fingers. “Digging for worms. We are going fishing.”
“Huh! Look at that Ben. The camp nurse has dirty hands!”
“She does indeed.” Ben responded and I laughed.
“I am a mess. I have been wearing the same outfit for over 24 hours and now with my dirty hands, I’m setting a terrible example to the kids, I’m sure!” I laughed again.
“Oh weeeeellll…we can help with that,” Angus said as he crossed his arms and then looked at Ben with a nod, “can’t we Ben.” Ben looked back at Angus.
“Absolutely we can.” Ben smiled wickedly.
“Are you gonna babysit the kids while I load the washing machine and have a hot shower or something…” I asked hopefully.
“That’s exactly what we are gonna do for you!” Angus told me.
“Seriously! That is so generous…” I started to say when Angus walked over to me and picked me up and swung me over his shoulder. I was flabbergasted.
Ben followed and from my vantage point I watched as he bent over and scooped up my son in his arms and then the worms. My son giggled with delight.
“I’ll be the babysitter.” Ben said. “I’m right behind you Angus!”
“Ummm Angus….what are you doing?” I tapped on his back as he stepped onto the fishing dock. I had a really bad feeling about this. Angus ignored my query. “Angus? Angus!”
Angus walked right past all the counselors, who now turned to look at us. He walked right over to the edge of the dock and stopped for a moment. Ben followed a safe distance behind, still holding my son.
“Wanna see your Mummy go for a swim?” Ben asked my son.
“Oh yes!” He responded. Humph. What a brat!
“Well here she goes.” Ben said as he took my son’s hand and had him wave to me. Angus stepped off the dock and we both plunged into the deep end of the lake as I screamed.
It was one way to get your laundry done.
|Hot shower and laundry, done the camp way.|