I’d packed just enough for the weekend. I had one extra shirt in case of emergency; a sweatshirt and a pair of sweatpants for the evening campfire; and a single bath towel. I threw my pillow in my duffel and drug the bag to the van: it was time to go to camp.
In the frenzy of getting my belongings to the car, I’d forgotten one crucial element. My sleeping bag.
When I arrived at camp, I grabbed a top bunk and slapped my pillow on it: my pillow, my only bedding. I thought I’d be fine, but I think I fell asleep around 4 AM. (I forgot my clock, too.) On the bright side, I found the best way to retain my body heat (although it made me nauseous). And, I awoke at a lovely 7:30 AM and went to the kitchen to help serve breakfast, where I had two tables of hungry teenage boys who wanted more bacon (but that’s a story for another time).
Saturday afternoon, we cleaned the campground and had a quick meeting before a ton of free time.
“Do you still have your Dutch Blitz cards?” I asked Jill.
“Yeah, I do!” she replied.
I rushed to the game room to drop off my backpack. I stepped back into the gym to find Jill again, and my eyes locked on a wandering puppy, carrying a sleeping bag and looking absolutely lost.
It was my friend. My friend, who hadn’t been to camp in years. My friend, who’d gone to a robotics event with my parents that morning. My friend, who I hadn’t seen in months, had come to the campground, and searched the buildings and various lawns for signs of English-speaking life.
Dad had asked him to drop off my sleeping bag at camp, since it was on his way home. And he did, even though it was completely out of his comfort zone. He’d tried finding out where to go by asking the Spanish-speaking guest group, and had received the answer, “This is not who you’re looking for.”
So, I slept in my sleeping bag that night. Hadn’t slept better in days. And I didn’t even care that I had to wrap it up the next morning.