Okay, so putting camp into a blog post is going to be tough, but let’s try sticking to just about 400 words max.
For our yearly camp adventure this year, we went to a beautiful place in China, called Zhaoqing. Other than the 6-hour bus ride that was excessively boring and non-productive, the experience and activities were the opposite.
“The immigration was a smaller pain than last year”, says Ms.Kinsinger .
Well, if that’s the case, than I would not have survived last year’s immigration, as I am a very impatient person. 2 immigration stations to pass, adding on the waiting for problems that some students might have, add on to an hour and a half of constant boredom.
The border was interesting. Some people think that in that hallway we passed through to get to China and back was not governed by neither HK or China. The truth is, when the British took over HK, the hallway was separated into a half-half. Now, even HK is part of China, so the hallway is all China’s. At least, that is my theory.
After a gas station and constant highway driving, we finally arrived at the unofficial boat pier, which a ferry took us to the campsite.
We were then introduced to all the staff, and then we went to our color groups(mine was green)and we each got a number; but since our Dragonfly leader was from Spain, we got spanish numbers(mine was cinco – 5).
The rooms we got were fine; I was expecting it to be in much worse conditions. My roommates were Simon and Harrison, we got along great, and nobody had any conflicts.
<———- The magnificent view from our cabins!
So! On to the activities. Let me just quickly go over them. They were: Inkstone carving, Chinese paintings, cable-way hiking, paper factory, and The Great Race.
They were all very entertaining, and most of them I haven’t had experience with before. The 2 most memorable activities were the paper factory, and cable-way hiking; in terms of interesting and exciting.
First off, let me talk about the paper factory. Now, don’t get fooled by the name. We actually only spent about 20 minutes at the paper factory, and the rest of the time we were back at a workshop room making our own paper. Let me tell you, making your own paper is not easy; it can be both disgusting while somehow fun to do. To make paper, we were going to use recycled paper.
We first had to rip them up into tiny square pieces, then soak them in water for a while. Then, we had to mix them(which at times can make you want to puke),and then put glue in it(while mixing)to allow it to stick together in the later process. After that, we had to use stockings as a sort of a net to put the recycled glob of mush on, and excessive water would go through the net. If you are still with me on this, you are a persistent reader, as this is the 888th word. Okay, so if you have finished putting the glob on the stocking, it’s time to dry em’ up! Finally, bring your net to one of the Dragonfly staff, and he will steam it with and iron for you it for you(so now you know what the glue was for!).
The 20 minutes spent at the paper factory was fine, except the smell of the inside the factory was revolting! I found out that in the olden days, the Chinese used what was called a “pit”, and put layers lime powder on bamboo to make softened bamboo. Then they put the softened bamboo it in a shredding machine, and it made some fluffy brown stuff. Lastly, they put it in a rolling machine to squeeze out excessive water, then got it into a big roll and ‘sliced and diced’ it right in the middle, and Voila! You have really fragile bamboo paper. I don’t know the whole concept, but I have a good idea. The bamboo paper is also used for “ghost money” meant to worship ancestors.
There’s actually nothing much to say about the cable-way hiking, just that it was terrifically brilliant! It was just plain intense at the first few parts, where you had to walk “back turned to the stone crab-walking style”, without a rope! The other parts with the cable was less intense, but I could not express this enough, much more safe! I think what makes this activity so awesome is because of the fear from falling down to the aggressive waterfall, which I don’t think anybody said that they were scared, but the reality is inside, the adrenaline was rushing through ever part of their body. At some point, somebody dropped a shoe down the waterfall, which was hilarious! Luckily, the staff was able to recover the shoe. Ha!
The food was okay, except the dinner on the first day, which I think nobody got enough from the small portion we were given for the many people on our table!
All in all, I can just say that this camp turned out to be much more exciting and fun than I imagined it to be. The only improvement that this camp could get was time management. Think about it. We actually spent 2 days of extraordinary fun and laughter, while another 2 days we were going from HK to China and back. But aside from that, I did enjoy the camp, and I will miss the magnificent view of the lake!
Wow, a planned 400 word post quickly changed into a thousand. But thinking back, making a 400 word post on camp would not have been a quality post either. So, all I can say is, you are truly a persistent reader!