Today, Monday, September 19, 2011, marks the beginning of an incredible journey for me. I woke up at 4:45 in the morning in Tom and Dottie Reed’s house, “up the hill” at Camp Pemigewassett. I woke up to the loons calling in the distance, the soft breeze rustling the pines around the house, and softly running water filling the nooks and crannies of the stream just outside the window. Change was in the air.
Chris Jacobs, head of maintenance at Camp Pemi, asked me to call him at 5:00 to make sure that he was up. I hustled over to the Little House, took a hot shower, put on clean clothes, and made my way down to the Big House. I put away the last of the dishes that I had cleaned the night before, I stuffed away all of my clean sheets, pillows, blankets and comforters in trash bags and put them away in the back bedroom, and I turned off the christmas lights for the last time in the year 2011. I closed the door, and I walked to the van where my lonely suitcase and backpack were waiting for me. I drove down the hill and parked in front of the Lodge, walked out to the Boat House, and I gazed upon the serenity and beauty of Lower Baker Pond for the last time this year. The fog was gently rolling back onto the foot of the hill across the lake, and the sun began to rise. The loon calls echoed within the Baker Valley, and I finally felt ready to leave the place I called home for four months. Pemi had given me the strength, the courage, and the hope to set out on an adventure, giving it my all every step of the way, and the assurance that I would be returning to its shores in a shorter time than I could ever imagine.
At 7:00, I caught the Dartmouth Caoch from Hanover to Boston, and at 12:30 pm, I took off from the city I hold closest to my heart. I watched the Pru, Copley Square, the Citgo sign, and the beach fade away into the distance, and I settled into my incredible book. I landed in New York City, and in an hour, I took off once again for the Mid-West; Cleveland, Ohio, where I would await John Peck to pick me up and whisk me away to my next adventure: Oberlin.
I now sit at the computer of Betsy Reed, inher lovely apartment in Oberlin. For the next two-and-a-half weeks, I’ll take care of Betsy while John and Phyllis take some time to rest up and vacation in Florida. I am so excited to spend some quality time with Betsy, learning about her life, her travels, Gilbert & Sullivan at Pemi, and many more things. And in addition to that excitement, I begin my journies of this year-off, living out of one suitcase and a backpack. Carrying my life with me wherever I go: insurance card, passport, driver’s license, and money… protecting it all with my life, and never letting my guard down.
This year has much in store for me: traveling to places I have never been, speaking with people in languages I do not yet know, handling affairs for myself my parents once took responsibility for, and making sure I stay healthy, happy, and above all, safe. I’ll be presented with lonliness, happiness, fear, exhilaration, excitement, experience, education, and so much more.
All I can say is that I’m excited beyond measure. I’m scared beyond belief. And I simply can’t wait to experience the good, the bad, and the best.