Marcy came running down the road and passed Bobbo and Muddy as they left the beach.

“Hi Anne! I have six new trippers that need physicals today before they leave on trip tomorrow. When would be a good time for you to see these kids?” Marcy asked me.

“Do you have time in the schedule now, Marcy?”

“Sure. We are doing all our introductions up in the staff lounge right now and then had planned on practicing portaging after dinner. So, now would be perfect.”

“Let’s do it,” I said to Marcy. I turned to Himself, “I’ll leave you in charge here and I will meet you at dinner, yes?”

“That works.” Himself stretched out in his chair and pulled out a new financial magazine to read. The kids barely noticed me leaving, they were so busy starting a new sand castle and moat down by the water’s edge. I grabbed my backpack, slipped my feet into my sandals and followed Marcy towards the main house.

“How is that abrasion on your neck? You never came back, so I assume it’s better?” I asked as we walked up the road.

“It’s getting better for sure. Well, that’s what Alisa tells me. She’s my room mate and I have had her look at it a few times.”

“Are you washing it twice a day with soap and water?”


“And applying the antibiotic cream after?”


“Then washing your hands with soap and water after you touch it?”


“How are you keeping up with your laundry? Remember we discussed how contagious it is? It’s important to wash all your shirts, towels, pillow cases, sheets, wash cloths, or anything that may be contaminated.”

“I have a huge pile of contaminated laundry, actually. I need to ask permission from Father Brian to use the camp laundry since I won’t get the chance to go into town for a week or so.”

“Please ask Father Brian because you will run out of fresh clothes before then, for sure. Let me know if I can help in any way.” I told her. I imagined of a pile of slimy clothes crawling with bacteria. In the camp environment, where personal hygiene was a low priority, it was a ticking time bomb!


“Do you want to do my laundry for me?” Marcy chuckled.

“I will if you need me to. I know how busy you counselors are, and I really think keeping your clothes clean is a top priority in preventing the spread of impetigo.” I told Marcy in all seriousness.

“Oh wow! I was just kidding, Anne.” Marcy looked at me with surprise.

“I’m not. Marcy…?” I stopped walking. Marcy stopped beside me. I tried to think how to say what I needed to say in a nice way.

“What?” Marcy asked looking bewildered. I looked her in the eye.

“You’re a freaking…walking…bio-hazard!” I said as punctuated my statement by grabbing her shoulders.

“Gee thanks Anne. I have been called a lot of things, but never ‘bio-hazard’!” Marcy’s face dropped.

“The truth hurts, Marcy. I’m sorry.” I looked into Marcy’s eyes, dropped my hands to my side and then looked away. She looked pained and I felt so horrible, but I really needed her to take this seriously.

“Seriously? Bio-hazard!” Marcy whispered. Then she laughed. “That. Is. Brilliant,” she laughed again. “Think it could be my new camp name?” Marcy asked as she started walking towards the main house. I took a few quick steps to catch up.

“I wouldn’t recommend it, Marcy. Not a great way to meet new people…” I grimaced.

We both laughed all the way up to the main house. I believed she got the message.






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