Last week I preached at a G.A. Camp. (For those of you not familiar with southern Baptist church programming that’s been around longer than color television, G.A. stands for “Girls in Action” and teaches girls in churches about missionaries and the Bible and Jesus and stuff.)
There were about 180 1st-6th grade girls there, plus counselors and camp directors, and I was the only boy around. I’ve been to a lot of youth camps and several boys/girls camp, but this was the first time I’d been to one that was just for girls.
It was exhausting.
I’ll write another post or two about how the week went, but for now, here’s a few things I learned at girls camp:
- Girls are really loud. And I think the effect is multiplied due to the pitch of their squeaky little voices. While it was adorable to hear them all singing songs about Jesus together, it was terrifying to walk into the lunchroom. Imagine if a thousand rusty doors were being swung back and forth repeatedly by a thousand angry cats fighting over a thousand squeaky toys. I ate eleven meals in that chaos.
- You can make lip gloss out of Vaseline, water and Pixy Sticks. You won’t learn that at boys camp. Each day, the girls had several classes to attend: Bible study, crafts, missions, “taste of nations” (where they sampled food from around the world), and a “Glitz and Glamour Spa”. I wanted to check out all the classes. The day I went to the spa, they were making lip gloss. I never asked anybody how it turned out, but I assume it was delicious.
- Some people are impressively fluent in “passive/aggressive”. Every morning we had a “sponsor meeting” where the camp director would cover the events of the day and make some announcements. She also gave the ladies who were there a chance to ask questions or voice concerns. I don’t even know how to adequately describe some of the things that were said. Some of the ladies would bring up things, but do it in a way that was both incredibly polite and incredibly rude at the same time. It was bizarre.
- You gotta be careful what you say. The camp director had asked me to bring a suit and emcee a talent show on the last night. Each church group had come with a song or dance or skit to perform, so I got dressed up in my slacks and coat and hosted the event. They turned on some spotlights, crammed all 200+ of us into a room, and we had a talent show. I had to get up on stage between every act and introduce the girls- 15 acts in total- and it was sweltering in there. No joke, it was probably close to 90 degrees, and I was wearing a suit. It was so hot. After the show was over, they had refreshments outside, so in five minutes, the doors opened, all 200 campers left the room, and the doors closed. I bet the temperature dropped 25 degrees in ten minutes. I was standing inside with some of the ladies who were working the camp, and one of them commented on the change in climate, to which I replied, “Yeah, it’s a lot cooler without all those hot little bodies in here.” Not the right choice of words when you’re the only guy at an all girls camp.
I was glad to come home Friday afternoon and see my family, take a nap, eat non-camp food, and watch TV.
Ever been to camp? What’d you learn there?