Tuesday morning after Labor Day weekend one month after the end of camp, I roll out of bed expecting to be greeted by the noise of campers bustling through the cabin. I think I'm about to step out into the crisp morning air and see the natural beauty of Maine before flag raising. Instead I am greeted by silence with sun pouring through my window, and I am alone. No campers bustling through a cabin, just me in my apartment.
Just like that I blinked and the school semester is starting up again, and the memories of camp are no more than memories in my current day to day life. But that sense of fulfillment I went to bed each night with this summer, still comes back to me while I'm home (just as I imagine all of you experience in your respective homes).
For many of us, school is starting and we wake up to get ready to reconnect with our friends and merely attempt to give them the correct depiction of how our summer went. However, we all know that nothing can explain the magic and wonder we found ourselves standing in during rehearsal, master classes, or the simple line for dinner. And we grasp onto those memories knowing that if we make it through this school year, that magic of camp will be on the other side waiting for us like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Thinking, if I can just make it through yet another tough winter, camp will be right around the corner and it will all be worth it.
A wise bracelet in my jewelry collection says, "the joy is in the journey"... For all things in life that is true. Just like our joy was in the journey through those three or six weeks of camp, the journey of this new school year can and will be just as joyous. Yes, nothing can compare to that time at camp when you wrote and performed an original song for the first time, or when you were surprised to be cast in a show where you were forced to rap in its entirety. At the same time, nothing will compare to the new adventures at school you experience through a new lens because of something you learned at camp.
The journey of creating that song gave you a deeper creative outlet you can utilize when homework has you stressed. The exploration of learning how to rap gave you a strong sense of confidence that you can now remind yourself of when you need a little extra push for the day. Just as those small journeys taught you something, the adventure of the new school year will teach you even more.
Life in the real world is never the same as life at camp, but it's not supposed to be. It's important to remember that while we want that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow that is camp next summer, enjoying the trip over the rainbow that is this school year is equally, if not more important.
I encourage each of you to remember the roots you've built at camp this summer or in summers past. I also encourage you to look to each day in the real world as a new opportunity to learn or take another step out of your comfort zone, just as you did at camp.
Living in the moment and embracing each new adventure with as much anticipation, eagerness, and positivity as we had towards each day at Acting Manitou will guarantee good fulfilling days in the real world. And by the time next summer rolls around it will have all been worth it because we took joy in all we did on our pilgrimages throughout the past year.
In this off season we will be posting many updates about campers/alumni as well as throwbacks to our wonderful summer. We love hearing from you all, so keep us posted on any and all great news! Keep your eyes peeled for reunions and possible online contests in order to keep in touch!
Good luck in all journeys you take this coming school year and remember to take joy in every step!