It's a beautiful day here at McGovern and we are in the thick of staff training.
Linoleum is busy on the phone doing registrations, Twist had a meeting with our placement students from Durham College, and there's a group of staff who are rehearsing some acting. We're not too sure what they're doing, but it has to do with Terms and Conditions. I'm sure we'll find out soon. Our dear Spinach is off on a family adventure and although it's only been half a day since she left, we miss her. Thankfully Lino has a picture of her above his desk. He had coffee with her picture this morning.
The staff has broke out into Ad-Hoc Committees for Tie Dye, Campfire, Hallman Activities, and a couple of other things that we run around camp. While they do that, I'll tell you about all the exciting things we've done in the past couple of days.
When our old friends arrived they participated in Canoe Wars, which is basically just a bunch of canoe races, tag, capture games, and tug-o-war. The dock at the Pond had floated to the other side, so Anakin and Hoola had to paddle their way over and retrieve it.
Our staff team is now complete (minus Dragon, who's coming in Session 4) and all of our new friends arrived. Boost stood at the gate with a walkie talkie and sent a message anytime somebody pulled in, sending those down the hill into a scramble for the Welcome Home sign (painted by Improv and Strum) and personalized signs with everybody's name on it.
We all waited in anticipation for Spin, who left early in the morning for Pearson Airport to pick up the Internationals, and as White Lightning came down the road, the last of our team members arrived. One friend, from New Zealand, was wearing quite an interesting get up comprised of a cow print onesie, with a suit jacket overtop, dress pants, and some fancy shoes. The Leadership team has been keeping a secret from the rest of the staff for a couple of weeks and it was revealed that we hired two more amazing guys from England! Spinach tried to convince us that she picked up hitchhikers, but we could all tell she was being very silly.
The old friends partnered with new friends and took them on a tour of camp, just like we do for campers. Everybody got their head checked for lice, got a snack, learned the Camp Rules, saw program areas, and went through our Child Safety Program.
Afterward, we ate a lovely dinner, played a game of Confused Counselor, and then had our first official Opening Campfire of the summer. We have small mentoring groups here at camp and my group got to watch me struggle for twenty minutes as I tried to build a fire. I've made a fire four nights in a row this week so thankfully I get to practice before the campers come. Nobody has the time to wait around while Pepsi blows softly on tinder to get a flame going. If anybody finds any dry cedar leaves, send them my way.
We sang The Moose Song, Princess Pat, Fruit Salad, The Littlest Worm, and The Banana Song (which quickly turned into The Plantain Song as Linoleum prompted us to do so. How does one "Go Plantains, Go Go Plantains?"). There was some sharing from old friends about different campers we're going to meet again this summer, our goals and hopes, and some fun stories were told as well.
Yesterday we played Capture the Flag in the big soccer fields, and there was some hefty shenanigans going around (not the old friend Shenanigans, for those who remember him). Linoleum and one of our LEAD2 graduates spent half the game at the dividing line arguing, Marvel strummed a ukulele to give herself theme music while she snuck around, and a few tall staff members showed off just how fast they can run when faced with getting tagged.
Linoleum was being absolutely ridiculous the entire game, so there's a lot of photos of him in this bunch.
We had another fire last night that was pretty fun; I was tired and took a break after a while and could hear all the loud singing from the Villa all the way to the Hallman. Marvel broke out an all time favourite called "Scat" and we whynotinchu-ed all the way back to our cabins. I can hear the Campfire Committee singing it in the distance now.
Some amazing news: we passed 400 registrations! Camp is so close to being fully stocked with amazing campers and everybody is buzzing with excitement for them to arrive. We have Saturday marked on the calendar as "Christmas Eve" because it's the night before our Session 1 campers come, by bus or car. I would hope nobody is walking to camp. Unless you live at one of the farms down the road, I suggest finding a ride.
Before I go, please send birthday wishes up to the sky for our beautiful, inspiring, and down right stupendous Assistant Director Linoleum. He keeps saying his birthday isn't technically until 5pm, the time he was born, but we sang and signed Happy Birthday to him at breakfast anyway.
The birthday boy!
Have a safe and happy Wednesday, McGovern Family!
P.S. Einstein has been doing a stand-up routine for about six days now.
Happy (belated) Canada Day, Camp McGovern!
A gaggle of old friends arrived yesterday and the LEAD2 graduates come today, followed by all of our new friends tomorrow. Greyjoy (who came from the Land of Greyjoy, known as Holland to most), Boost, Hoola, Anakin, Ohana, S'Mores, and Improv all came down the hill as we rushed forward whooping and shouting their names. Tigger also stayed for a visit after delivering Anakin.
We woke up to a lovely pancake breakfast, where a debate over Aunt Jemima's and real maple syrup ensued. Linoleum was heartbroken when he learned the syrup he was using was in fact not Aunt Jemima's, but Sysco brand, so Twist came out the victor this morning.
Twist and linoleum giving some exuberant answers during the game "Anomia"
Last week we had our first One Utensil Meal of the summer, with one of our Camp Medical Officers receiving the fabled whisk. Don't tell Greyjoy, but she may meet her foe at some point this week - also, get ready for the whisk puns I'm going to pull out this summer. Linoleum had to eat beans and rice with a giant potato masher. He was a little bit salty (as the kids say), but he eventually got his dinner down. I had to scoop up my meal with a large ladle and tip my head back as I tapped the bottom of the ladle.
On Thursday night I attempted to build a fire for the friends that stayed on site for the weekend, but the wood was too wet so it mostly ended up being a paper fire as we fed recycled paper into the fire. Thankfully last night's fire got going pretty quickly and we were able to roast s'mores (S'Mores didn't have any though, weird) and hang out in the Villa. Greyjoy was pretty jetlagged so we had to keep our campfire silliness to a low volume.
Einstein welcomed everybody home!
Before the fire last night, we all gathered on the skate park to have a game of dodgeball, but not just any kind of dodgeball. We used marshmallows, and there's nothing like watching a dozen marshmallows being thrown back and forth as the staff dodge and run around to get other people out.
I got some pretty amazing photos and my favourite part was when the teams had to pick one person to "protect" from the marshmallows; literally everybody pointed to Boost. Don't worry, Mama Boost, we're taking care of him and we shall vanquish each mallow fiend that comes near him.
Unexpected things always happen at camp and today while Linoleum was delivering life jackets to the canoe shed, White Lightning got stuck in the mud. Impromptu team building, anybody? We all piled into the costume closet, where our store of rubber boots lives, slipped some on (some friends had mismatched feet) and made our way down to the Pond.
When we got there, I made everybody pose in their rubber boots like we were at prom, and Linoleum found his new Facebook profile photo.
That's all for today, but I'll be back tomorrow with more hilarity and staff training shenanigans, bonding, and old/new faces. Enjoy your Sunday, McGovern Family!