Of course, as all late packers like us know all too well, we left a few things behind - some important, others trivial but left it all the same. And, obviously, we didn't realise until the point in time when we rummaged through our bags to find nothing that we didn't put in.
Sitting in the bus was a bore to say the least. I kept watching popping my head behind the blinds to see the passing road which gave me something to do to keep busy. It was enlightening, first because of the once in a lifetime chance to see - actually observe - the path I'd gone through more times than I could or would count. Hard to believe I've passed this route almost every week yet not knowing what laid to its left and right. Second, because of the calm and tranquility it provided.
Coming here again felt good. It brought back memories although somehow the place felt different. It has expanded I realised but it felt smaller someway. Maybe it's just my growing up. Who cares? All I know is that I'm here for the weekend. A weekend with no traffic, no homework, no worries :)
Then, I sort of forgot what happened. I do remember getting bored again, wandering the area looking to swim, acting crazy all the time. Failure to find a deep enough pool of water and a clean enough pool (more importantly) forced me and the rest of our small circle to play cards. We looked like homeless people really with shorts and t-shirts, a towel on our necks, playing cards on the bare ground. I honestly felt like going home that time, I was just a phone call away anyways but I held my hand and tongue.
Sleep didn't come to me that night. I was alone, and cold. One, two, three o'clock. But still I was wide awake. Why can't I sleep? Had I been younger, I would've been scared shitless but I wasn't. In fact, it was the best time I had at camp so far. I played the events of the day over and over again in my head, the BBQ dinner, the night walk which was a bummer for being too short-lived, the endless boredom of wandering without aim, the ice-breaking session, the new names that I couldn't match with a face, and somewhere along those lines, the lines of dream and wake blurred...
Next thing I knew, it was sunrise. Not really, it was still half-past four. More waiting commenced and day two came along.
I was asked by a friend to help with the morning session. Oh well, why not? Then it was breakfast followed by a long trip up and up the back of the forest we went. Fueled by the anticipation of a waterfall at the top, I went on ahead a little bit lightheaded than the day before despite the lack of shut-eye.
Up and up and up we went. Crossing small rivers, jumping from one moss-covered stone to the next, falling a few times in the process, leaping over roots of trees and fallen logs, up and up and up we went. Then came the distant sound of water over water over rocks over a huge fall. Distant at first, closer and closer then on. Until a clear cut torrent laid before us. Not magnificent but worthwhile it was.
Finally! A clean and fresh gush to cleanse away my worries! Not thinking half, I jumped in the cool water, splashing around (due to slipping most of the time) like an idiot. it was pure joy I tell you. Then it started getting a little bit too crowded for me. But I didn't mind: there was a secluded area where the first of the falling stream fell and that was where I went.
Getting up there was easy, staying there with water pounding your head and body was not but I welcomed the effect it gave: I heard nothing more of the others, not even my friend who had followed me there siting beside me yelling at the top of his voice. I didn't see them either for my eyes were shut tight to prevent water from entering. I wished I could stay there forever.
Alas, all good things come to an end. The whole trip was good too, and therefore it too closed with a snap. However, as one door closed, more than a dozen new ones opened. Remembering names may not be my forte but keeping hold of faces and memories are. With that note, thank God for the chance You gave, thank you friends for making this work, thank you mates for making my life that much more colourful :)
We don't stop playing because we grow old,
We grow old because we stop playing.
-George Bernard Shaw