Blog Editors: Elizabeth, Shanlla, and Rand, Anamika, Bibi, and Briana (Girls 2019 Second Years)
This post marks the first week of the girls’ session at Camp Rising Sun! It was filled with much anticipation upon the camper’s arrival and copious introduction to projects, instructions, and general Camp culture. This week was led by the Second Years: Anamika Shrimali, Elizabeth Hudak, Shanlla Remtulla, Rand Abdul Hamos, and Bibi Molhar, who also edited this week’s blog.
The Second Year Experience
Setting foot on the Clinton campus was a profoundly surreal experience. It was as if I had devolved to myself a year ago, quiet and nervous and utterly at a loss for words regarding the four weeks I had ahead of me. It was luxurious at first to see the showers empty and the locker room silent, or to see the laundry room without its usual clutter of wet clothes and scattered laundry baskets, but the experience quickly became energizing. It manifested in a strange excitement to wait in line for a shower, but in reality I couldn’t wait to see Camp filled with noise and eager faces.
Awaiting the girls’ arrival, I quickly became nervous—to lead them through their first week here, about my capabilities as a leader, and their receptiveness to my leadership. When they arrived, however, and throughout their first few days of being accustomed to Camp, I was consistently astounded by the potential that I saw. Looking at everyone together reminds me of the hope that I felt last year, a kind of simple warm feeling that has been carrying me through my first week. When I look at them, I see promise and capability, growth waiting eagerly to occur. The next few weeks ahead are sure to be all too long and all too short, and I am so excited for them!
-Shanlla (2nd Year Camper, Colorado)
Second Year Training and First Year Orientation
Week One has been incredibly busy for everyone here. For the staff, Camp started on June 12 and for us Second Years, our second season started on the 20th when we arrived for training two days ahead of the rest of the campers’ arrival. While reuniting with our favorite counselors from last year and meeting all the new ones was amazing, the highlight for us was the second the bus pulled into the driveway and we got to meet the rush of new campers. Within the next two days, campers were put through the fun but rigorous orientation process. On Day 1, dozens of suitcases were lugged up to Tent Hill, phones were turned in to the Main Office, and first years got to walk around our beautiful campus in a tour by counselors Darrio and Jorge. By the time it was time for the first tent check, everyone was exhausted but ready to take on the next four weeks!
-Elizabeth (2nd Year Camper, Pennsylvania)
Rick Richter Visits
Rick Richter was a counselor at CRS in 1950 for four years. He is extremely invested in the lives of campers and uses his knowledge from being a professor as well as his passion for Camp’s history to teach others. He makes it a priority to travel to Camp during the season. During the first week, Rick taught two instructions: one about the history of Camp, and the other about the American College System. We love having Rick here, it’s always a good time!
Noa’s Birthday (Interview with Noa)
On Wednesday, we celebrated our first camper birthday! A small surprise party was thrown for Noa, complete with balloons, chocolate-banana cake, and Camp traditions, like singing in all the languages of campers present.
What was your birthday like at home? Do you have any traditions?
“Every birthday, in the evening, my family goes to a restaurant. In the morning, the house is decorated with balloons and presents are given. During that weekend, the whole family (grandparents, etc) would come together and have a big celebration.”
How was it celebrating your birthday in a new place?
“The day started out not so good because I missed my family a lot. But as the day went on, I started to have a lot of fun. We had a great celebration with lots of friends, jokes, and talking. The celebration and the cake were amazing, and I had a great time!”
Were you surprised by the birthday celebration last night?
“I expected something, but I didn’t know what it would be, and it ended up being bigger than anything I imagined. It was really cool to hear the songs and be thrown by my friends on the birthday chair. It was amazing!”
This Week’s Instructions
Body Percussion (Jorge, Spain)
Design with Bamboo Skewers (Amrinder, New York)
Body Movement (Lindsey, Pennsylvania)
Fire (Jonas, Denmark)
The Danger of a Single Representation in Literature (Emilia, Finland)
Introduction and Instruction Proposal Fill Out
History of Camp (Special Guest Rick Richter)
Poetry (Shim, New York)
Voice Acting (Darrio, Barbados)
Postcard Making (Dulce, Mexico/Texas)
Disagreement in Film (Justin, New Jersey)
Microaggressions (Janessa, Minnesota)
Intro to the US College System (Special Guest Rick Richter)
Tap Dancing (Tiffany, Missouri)
Ice Hockey (Elizabeth, Pennsylvania)
Intro to Devising (Weronika, Poland)
Letters from Camp:
Dear Mom and Dad,
I’m spending a really interesting time here, there are challenges but there are so many new things to discover and learn. I’ve figured out the problems I told you last time during the phone call, I’ve made so many new friends, and I’ve experienced already a lot, like instructions, trails, councils, and I’ve even met the friend of the translator of Mao ZhuXi. I really miss you and love you soooo much, and tell me if you’ve received my previous 2 letters to you pls.
-Michelle (Xiling Fang)
Hey Mom, Dad and Neal!
I miss you guys so much but I’m having so much fun! I can’t wait to see you guys again.
-<3 Love, Anamika
Hey mum, dad, Nhawa and Temfuma. I miss you guys so much. I hope you are all fine. I sent a letter home so I hope it gets there. Mum, please send the email used to write here to my friends (Bianca) so that they can send me emails. Love you <3
Haaper alt gaar bra hjemme, jeg har det veldig goey!
Jeg oppleverog laerer masse, og har faat venner fra India, Finland, Sverige, Groennland, Israel, USA, Palestina og mer! Haaper alt er fint i norge! Ses snart!
Hey <3 jeg savner jer og glaeder mi til at se jer gen. Jeg Har det goddt paa camp, og haaber at I ogsaa har det godt, see u in 3 weeks <3.
- Elsker Jer, Julie.