Dear Camp Robindel,
Sleep-away camp season is upon us, so I’m filling out an application for my daughter. She’s still in my womb. No, I’m not crazy.
It’s for NEXT summer.
She’ll be almost 1 and, much like all the Lermans starting camp far younger than the suggested age, she’ll be fine. But also like all the Lermans starting camp far younger than the suggested age, it won’t REALLY matter if she’s fine or not, the point is more that her mom needs a break. So she’s getting on that plane, goddamnit.
If my kid is anything like her mom, she’ll be a bit confused, under-showered, and questionably lice-infested for the first few weeks, wondering if Ann and Nat are her new parents and if this bunk is just where she lives now. Or, if she’s like her Uncle Zack over at brother camp Winaukee, she’ll wear one Teva all summer, be covered in weeks-old temporary tattoos, smell like the dubious roped-off section of the lake, and spend all her free time, voluntarily, with the camp nurse.
The adjustment will be slightly jarring, but then the first time she receives a “free” foot-long Charleston Chew at canteen without having to write the required letter home (because is this dirty, gap-toothed, bowl-haircut kid even old enough to write? No one is certain), she’ll smile and be like, “Oh, ok. I got this. I’m going to run this place now.”
She won’t even bother to wipe the chocolate drool from her chin. It will remain there, crusted over, for two months.
So reserve a spot in Hemlock for Summer of ’19, please. Top bunk. Don’t even waste your time with a guard rail. Kid’s gotta learn.
Emily, aka “Lerman”
(9-year camper, 3-year counselor. Owner of 3 CR necklaces— 2 actually earned, and 1 because you forgot you already gave me a gold at 9 years, so you gave me another at 10. I did not correct your mistake. I just quietly pumped my fists and gleefully snatched my third necklace, which would be excusable behavior had I not been 19 years old and in charge of roughly 40 middle schoolers at the time.)