The summer after fifth grade, I went to summer camp for only my second summer ever (but I was already hooked). Two of my friends from home came with me and we ended up in a cabin together with several other girls who would become life-long friends.
We arrived at camp and met our very enthusiastic camp counselor who informed us that her name was Kiska and that she only wore mascara on Sundays because it made her look older in front of the parents. We breezed through the swim check and camp tour (as very experienced campers) and headed to dinner.
|The actual sign we made for our beloved camp counselor 13 years ago.|
The conversation was a little awkward but Kiska kept it moving, especially once she told us we had to drink at least one glass of milk and eat at least a “no-thank-you” serving of everything on the table (except, of course, food allergies).
Was she not aware of the definition of camp? Mom wasn’t here, I didn’t have to drink milk or eat vegetables! We looked at each other, trying to gauge how serious this crazy counselor had to be. And as we watched, she poured each of us a tall glass of milk.
Being fifth graders, we had two choices. We could fight this all week long, or we could embrace it with the full extent of our being and drink as much milk as possible in that week. We chose the latter, and I believe we drank over 50 half gallons of milk over the next six days. Kiska started washing them out and stacking them near our table, creating our “wall of milk”. We made a sign and boasted to the other cabins about our milk drinking (and by then, we were so far ahead that they couldn’t possibly catch up). We laughed more that week than anyone else in the dining hall and probably annoyed the older girls, but it is still one of the happiest weeks in my camp memory.
Years later, I had the opportunity to counsel alongside Kiska at camp and watching her love, serve, and laugh with her girls stirred up such happy memories and was an encouragement to me as I tried to do the same.
But I never did drink that much milk again.