My first movie-moment-of-glory happened early this afternoon and provoked a screech of excitement, which was immediately followed by the bellowing of the Oompa Loompa song. You guessed it folks, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (the old and BEST one, not that crappy new Johnny Depp thing) had made an appearance on our TV Guide Menu. I was totally content as I sat with my cup of tea laughing at Augustus Gloop as his bubble butt got stuck in the pipe of the chocolate river...that was, until I accidentally sat on the remote and, with my bubble butt, changed the channel to Wheel of Fortune. As I'm not 50 years old, I impatiently pressed numerous buttons in order to get back to the TV Guide and search for the channel with Mr. Wonka again. It was this second time around that I spotted another gem, the only Lindsay Lohan film I can stand...The Parent Trap. And though I tried to stay committed to Mr. Wonka and little Charlie Bucket, I just couldn't help myself. The lush green forest, glistening lake and log cabins of Camp Walden For Girls beckoned the little girl inside of me and I just had to check it out...for old times sake.
As I sat giggling at the water balloons, shaving cream and feathers falling like snow, (Oh, and realizing for the very first time that one of the camp counsellor's is the same woman who plays Janice in F.R.I.E.N.D.S), I was immediately brought back to the sweet sweet summertime of 1998, when a 10 year old Amanda and 9 year old Sonya watched this movie for the very first time, desperately wishing we could, like Hallie and Annie, go to Camp Walden too.
As a child I never got to experience a summer camp. Living in such a rural state, each summer I waved goodbye to oodles and oodles of friends who enjoyed their summer months at Girl Scout camp, and even my sister went away for the summer to an Asthma camp one year. I, however, enjoyed each summer vacation with our next door neighbor Mrs. Pawul (aka Mom) learning how to make lattice out of pie crust on top of my Strawberry Rhubarb pies, or angel food cake. While I'm definitely NOT complaining - if you've read my memoirs I've posted about Mrs. P, you'll know how much I adored my time with that special woman - I do feel ever so slightly sad that I missed out on that very American summer experience. And even now, as a married woman who is CLEARLY too old to attend (trust me, I even checked the real Camp Walden's website. HA! Don't judge!) I wish I could turn back the hands of time and go, even if for just one summer - to an old summer camp deep in the words, alongside a lake, like Hallie and Annie did in The Parent Trap.
I have the I wanna go to summer camp feeling burning in my belly once again.
As a teacher, I'm lucky in that I have the summer months free to embark on new adventures. Amd while I'm one of those people who dream big - I've already set my goal as running a small pre-school from my house over the summer months (in a couple of years, when Carl and I have children of our own), I really think I've found something else I'd love to do. Regardless of the sea sickness I experience when kayaking, my hatred for mosquito bites, and the pain in the butt associated with clothes smelling of camp fire, I really would love to embark on the whole camp counsellor experience at some point in my life. Who knows, maybe next year? I think it's only fair that at some point, and in some way, I experience the summer camp fun I've craved for so long. Even if it is in the form of looking after the girls rather than being one - I'd still like to give it a go myself.
Have any of you experienced the joys of summer camp as a child? Were they as wonderful as Hallie and Annie make out? Did I really miss that much? Please share your stories, as I'd love to live vicariously through you ;)
I hope you've all enjoyed a lazy Sunday, and maybe even found an old movie to spark childhood memories as well.
Thanks for reading, guys.
Lots of love, love, love,