I’m sure that most of us have as least one traumatic memory from our first time at sleep away camp. Don’t you vividly remember the horror of being sent away alone for several nights amongst prepubescent strangers like yourself? I know I do. I catch the first whiff of the briny breeze as I step out of the car at the ferry terminal in downtown Seattle. The air is chilly at 8 am despite it is the middle of July. Greeted by swarms of kid and teenagers alike, all of them here for the same reason as I am: to be cast away for 7 dreadful days to Vashon Island. Destination: Camp Sealth.
There is a flurry of duffel bags and sorting out boat tickets and hugs and kisses goodbyes to parents as each of us solemnly depart. We are practically stepping off into the abyss towards the great unknown, A.K.A. a white ferry on Puget Sound. There are tears; there are protests, yet exhausted parents still must shove their reluctant children aboard, a twinkle of guilt along with relief in their tired paternal eyes. I float among these hectic crowds; my dad is already gone. I’m yet to cry. Instead I am a speck of dust being herded like a sheep, backpack and Northface duffel in tow, my only company the novel Legend by Marie Lu. Guided aboard a packed vessel where I will feel incredibly alone. Continue reading