This past week was a scorcher, and, on Sunday, Kerem 18 cooled off via a long-awaited turn on the Aqua Kef—the newest feature on the Agam (lake). Later in the afternoon, we did a leadership peulah (activity) in which Kerem wrote up instructions for making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, which were then followed extremely literally by their counselors. Kerem thus learned the importance of providing detailed, specific instructions when communicating with kids. With this lesson in mind, they started to plan their own peulot erev (evening activities) for their own tzrifim (bunks) that they would execute later in the week.
We kicked off Monday with a four hour bus ride to Maine for our white water rafting overnight trip. Despite the fact that the DVD player on the bus didn’t work and we couldn’t watch The Incredibles as planned, we were not to be deterred. Once we arrived, we had the rest of the afternoon to relax by the pool and hot tub and enjoy the lovely mountain scenery and perfect weather. For dinner we grilled hot dogs, hamburgers, and various vegetables, and the evening culminated in some nighttime swimming and a bonfire.
We woke up bright and early the next day for an adventurous morning of white water rafting along the scenic Kennebec river. We learned to work together to paddle in order to keep the rafts afloat and moving and had several opportunities to swim in the river itself. Twelve miles of rafting and a few sunburns later, we headed back to the adventure bound base to watch a rafting highlights video reel and pack up the bus, and then hit the road once more.
Wednesday morning was another early wakeup as we upheld the annual Kerem tradition of attending the local Northwood 4th of July celebration held at Demmons, a small corner store on the end of Lucas Pond Road. There was singing, a folk band, a local kid named Cameron with impressive bicycling skills, and a rousing reading of the Declaration of Independence. Kerem 18 brought a lot of ruach (spirit), energy, and silly costumes, showing the inhabitants of Northwood what we’re all about. The remainder of the 4th of July celebrations included dancing, a game show, and fireworks at night.
On Thursday night, Kerem had the opportunity to run the peulot erev (evening activities) for their bunks that they had worked on throughout the course of the week. Examples included project runway, a lip synching competition, a scavenger hunt, various sports, and a bonding activity in canoes. Kerem learned a lot from the experience, and got some amazing feedback from the madrichim (counselors) of their respective bunks to boot.
Despite the challenges that the busy schedule and ongoing heat presented this past week, Kerem 18 took it all in stride, keeping up the energy and taking advantage of newfound opportunities to showcase their manhigut (leadership) to the whole machaneh (camp). This coming week will be another busy one for Kerem 18 as they prepare to show their stuff at Zimriyah (the all-camp singing competition). We simply can’t wait to see what they will do next!