As a 21 year old fresh-faced graduate who had lived as an independent, fairly free-spirited woman for the past three years, heading to a camp full of rules and regulations was a bit of a shock to the system.
I had tried to prepare myself by reading endless blogs, articles and anything else camp related that I could get my hands on but there were some things that I could only find out on my own…
Not everyone you meet will be super chirpy and constantly pumped!
Some might, but after the introductions are over people start acting normal. When the kids aren’t around it’s exactly what you would expect a group of 20-30 year old’s to be like. Mainly on some form of technology or discussing boys/girls or having a bit of a bitching session about some kids. Yes you love them but boy do you want to throttle little Jimmy!
It’s tiring… so bloody tiring
Your days are long, you are constantly looking after others and it’s hot. Camps have lots of activities which is great but you, as counsellors, have to teach these activities. If you’re the sporty type you could be teaching football, rugby, kayaking and paddle boarding all in one day. Whether you’re fit or not, it’s still going to take its toll on you.
There will be camp flings
EVERYWHERE! So many people falling in love or just having a quickie on their day off. Of course this is going to happen, you trap 40+, 20 something boys and girls in a place with not many other options what else is going to happen?! Trust me people will work their way around camp and just like a scene from Mean Girls there will be the notorious womanizer, the girl that’s a little too easy and probably a love triangle… Oh the drama.
Everyone will get wasted on days off and come back a bit drunk
Some people just don’t know when one more is too many… a classic case of a bad hangover is ten times worse when you’ve got to plaster a smile on your face and have kids waiting on your every word. Whack those sunglasses on, hydrate and suck it up. It is self-inflicted after all!
It is probably the most rewarding job you will ever do
You become a mum, sister and best friend to a group of strangers almost overnight. It’s scary as hell, especially for someone who isn’t maternal, but once you learn the ways of ‘your kids’ you pick up things about them. There is nothing more rewarding than meeting a kid on the first day that is shy and uncomfortable and seeing them leave with a new found confidence. It’s nice to think that you had something to do with that.
Are you heading off to a summer camp soon? We’d love to hear where you are all heading!