Ever since I returned from spring break in England, I’ve wanted to write a Camp Alleghany Blog about my experience. But it wasn’t until I read a quote about friendship on Pinterest that I actually sat down and e-mailed Elizabeth about my idea. The quote is as follows:
It’s kind of weird how we say we’re friends, but don’t even see each other or don’t talk often. But it would be weirder if I say you’re not my friend, and yet I care for you this much.
This quote summarizes camp friendships to a “T.”
For reasons such as school, and distance, staff and campers don’t generally get to see our camp friends during the year, or as much as we would like to. But I know I cherish my camp friends so much. I consider them my “best of friends.” Yet I usually have to squeeze camp friendships into summer since I’m not likely to see those friends until the following summer.
Across the pond
However, a strong camp friendship recently led me to visit England for Spring break. I was able to talk my parents into allowing me to travel solo to visit Georgina O’Toole, this summer’s assistant head of Senior Camp. What comforted my mom was that I would be under the wing of another “Ghany Girl,” meaning she knew that this young woman — whom she had never met — was worthy of taking care of “her baby.”
What comforted me to make this journey was knowing that I am confident and independent — relative to my age of course — two qualities I attribute to my 11 summers on the banks of the Greenbrier River.
Reflecting back on the trip, I remember it feeling so normal to be in England because of the friendship I have with Georgie, as well as other camp friends. It doesn’t matter how long we’ve been apart, or where we meet again, it instantly feels normal, like nothing’s changed. It’s almost as if time hasn’t lapsed. This is because at camp you make genuine connections with the girls around you, because camp life is simple and relaxing, and the only drama we have is a class taught in the play hall!
Many, many thanks!
I guess this post is a thank you to ‘Ghany for many things.
The first thank you is for teaching me how to be a strong, independent woman, who’s confident enough to step out of her comfort zone. The second thanks you for giving me a place to make the connections, and genuine friendships I’ve made. The third thank you is for providing me with amazing opportunities including my first job and a reason to go to England!
All that and I get to come back this summer. Life is good!
–Carlee Pennypacker, Counselor, Camp Alleghany for Girls