Camp Time is Not Normal Time

Posted by Steve Baskin on Jul 17, 2013 5:35:30 PM
Steve Baskin
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I think they might be distorting the time! I think they might be distorting the time!

We are truly in the home stretch.

Starting several years ago, I started to conduct a survey with my oldest campers.   Here are the questions.   I ask all of them in a row without getting any responses.  I then ask them to answer using their fingers.

  • How long does the first week of camp feel like?
  • How long does the second week of camp feel like?
  • How long does the final week of camp feel like?

I have asked this at least a dozen times and the results are remarkably consistent.  The first week feels like 7-10 days, the second 5-7, the final one 1-3 days.

I find this intriguing.  This is not the difference between a week when you are 8 and a week when you are 40.  We all know that time seems to go faster as we age, but should it change so much over 21 days?

By the way, I am fully aware that time operates differently on the parent side.  Every week seems to take the same amount of time.  For our first time parents, I suspect that each week felt like a month.  [Note: knowing this makes us admire your willingness to give your child a camp experience.  It is not easy on parents, but it is wonderful for your children.  Ultimately, so much of good parenting is making sacrifices for your child.  This disparity of time perception is one such example.]

As long as I am making odd observations, here is another one.

People get louder when it rains.  We got another 45 minute cloudburst right before dinner that charged up the campers.  I think it starts when they are attempting to talk over the sound of rain on roofs, but it continues outside and even grows. When we told them they would get cake, they erupted again.  The “Attitude Checks” were as loud as I have ever heard (a call-and-response competition between the girls and boys to see who is feeling better).  When we announced the winner of the Trojan Spartan games (Spartans) in the Fillin Station, it was as loud as a rock concert.

With the rain, we cancelled Torchlight tonight and went straight to the Pajama Dance.  Once again, the energy level was tremendous.

You will be arriving in a couple of days [translation – 12 hours camp time, 7 days mom-time] and we are committing to cram as much friendship and togetherness into the remaining time.

Steve Sir

Tags: Counselor