Chapter 9 – Operation Summer Part II

Stardate 040617 the first day of camp has begun and by first day of camp I mean the first day at the camp which involved in polite terms bugger all. Mostly awkward interactions with my new co-workers and trying to find something to eat (looking back I assume we found food because I’m still alive) after that and a FaceTime with my parents giving them a half arsed tour of the camp and them mocking my “facial hair” which shortly involved shaving and looking like a fresh born baby maybe I’ll send a photo if you ask looking at you Adam… So there we are a Mexican an Irishlady and an Englishman on a dock looking out over sylvan lake we talked about ourselves and discussed what the summer will bring and what bought us to this place. we played some frisbee on the beach and yes I was the super hip cool guy who purchased a frisbee and yes I do still have the frisbee I threw out clothes so I could keep travelling with it! and then all of a sudden in the late afternoon a man stood on top of the path down to the beach and said “do you guys work here” our repose was a rather sheepish “ermm yes” the man responded with “I’m Kendrah’s father” we all though who is Kendrah should we know who she is? **side note she was a counsellor** so we start talking to Kendrah and no word of a lie she scared the living shit out of us telling us stories about camp all the rules what you can and can’t do It was like a weeks worth of information in a span of 4 hours. Looking back I think it helped but I really have no idea! and lets skip forward because I can’t remember what happened!

Stardate 050617 – 010717 the first day of training and oh boy my memory is failing me so I’m going to attempt to condense around a month worth of training into a few paragraphs please wish me luck…

Low Ropes

Now this was the first time we worked as a whole team hence the term team building exercises and at the time I wasn’t  a fan of the whole team building actives and feeling like a complete tit in-front of others but now I have come to the realisation that nobody really gives a fuck as everybody is in the same boat this took an embarrassing amount of time to realise! but the actives involved some name games, learning about each other and trusting one another and hence the title Low Ropes was the main focus of this portion of training now at the times I wasn’t a fan of the Low Ropes but now I have to say it’s one of my favourite activities it really does encourage teamwork and the trust of others now as all adults its pretty easy to learn and work as a team and control everybody but when attempting to teach a bunch of grade 7s to perform these tasks it turns into a big old shit show nobody listens and this can cause major issues and somebody can get hurt (I’m turning into an old teacher) but with this under our belts we where ready teach and starting to form friendships

Canoeing 

Sidenote **mature language** I FUCKING LOVE CANOEING  **mature language over** Now I’ve only ever been canoeing once before this “but ciaran how can you love it if you’ve only done it once before 6 years ago” first of who told you it was 6 years ago oh wait I’m the author and asked an imaginary question (did I just break a 3rd wall? yes, yes you did) but really I have just loved the idea of being on a lake paddling away talking about life and taking a nice long day chilling on the water man that is the dream right there! Now to actually take these kids on the water we need to be certified instructors and thats exactly what we where doing fancy that eh. Our instructor was Seb great guy super friendly and enthusiastic the course was only for 3 days and for 1 of those days it was white caps on the lake so canoeing was out the window on that day but we learnt all the strokes and how to recover a tipped canoe thats harder than it looks! and then on the last evening we played some form of tag with foam pieces that you had to pick up with your paddle and throw at another canoe (I do have a short film showing this) ask me to upload it on the internet… and that is canoe training complete I’m now certified by Paddle Canada and get a metric fuck tonne of emails from them **thumbs up**

Being a councillor 101 

I wasn’t a councillor so this section is completely irrelevant, instead I was mowing grass and cleaning porcelain like a god damn pro! because I was DR.JAN-ITOR

Operation Summer Part III will be coming to a screen near you soonTM but in all honesty the summer was a complete blast and part III I have no idea where to start so maybe there will be something different maybe A Midnight Summers Dream…

 

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Chapter 8 – Operation Summer Part I

Stardate 200817 I have Operation Summer has now been completed and I can confirm it was a bloody good success! The premise of Operation Summer was to get away from routine and away from the big city to a place where I can experience nature and live a tranquil life. After working at CIBC for 6 months sat in an office looking out over city hall I had a realisation that I had become comfy with my life as explained in Chapter 7 this was not good! So I decided that I would work in a summer camp for the summer with the intention just to get out of the city explore nature and maybe make a few friends but after 3 months I can say I have made friends for life, pushed my social boundaries way beyond their limits and explored nature a lot!

Lets jump back and tell the tale of Operation Sumer (It will be written how I would write on the day, no time for past tense Bull$hit here)

Stardate 010617 I have packed up all my belongings once again living out of a 75L backpack its all fun and games (trust me) I have successfully made my way to Toronto airport, ski jacket in hand it’s too big to place into my rucksack shame… I sat down at the bar and ordered a beer (it was around 8:00pm) The guy sat next to me was a fellow brit and by the end of my beer I wanted to strangle this guy he would not stop talking to me, Look I enjoy conversation as much as the next guy but I know fuck all about the city your from and the business your in sorry… after this dilemma of leaving and coming off as rude or staying and pulling my hair out my flight was called “Flight for Calgary is boarding” finally Operation Summer is a go! After landing in Calgary it was gone midnight I had called an Uber and waited for around 15 minutes I realised I was in the wrong pickup spot whoops and my driver canceled on me (if your reading this Uber driver my apologies) after that stormshow I arrived at the hostel dumped my bags and set off to find some food as I was as hungry as the wolf! but could I find an open food establishment could I bollocks so I went to the dollar store (why was it open at an ungodly time) and bought some $1 cookies and ate around 24 in one sitting (no judgment required I’m a pig and I’m proud of it!) and then making my way back to the hostel I lay my head down and had a ruddy good sleep!

**note to past me, I hate you for writing all this up now**

Stardate 020617 after refuling my body with sleep juice I was ready to explore a new city it began with a walk downtown I went the the classist of food establishments A&W it was a mediocre breakfast slightly disappointed in myself looking back but hey what are you going to do about it… I then walked down the the river and a local park I started to message Taff about calgary we had a discussion that the time zone was a bitch as it was morning here and late afternoon there crazy going from 5 hours to 7 hours difference! after the exchange of messages and pictures of geese I headed back into the city centre and headed to the Glenbow museum it was pleasantly nice, learnt some Canadian history and seeing some delightful rocks and minerals (I enjoy any museum that has rocks and minerals) I briefly explored the history of Calgary in all honesty I can’t remember jack all that they hosted the Winter Olympics once… And then I headed off on a bicycle trip and man It ended up being on heck of a trip in total around 23km not to shabby considering I haven’t cycled in over 6 months! after having a Donair kebab in the middle of nowhere and after arriving there was one thing on my mind BEER! I cracked open the couchsurfing app and within moments I had met a group of people and we all chatted grabbed a few drinks and a bite to eat overall a pretty delightful and unexpected day of exercise and socialising!

**Is this written in past or present tense I have no clue now, great job me**

Stardate 030617 today is moving day! I finally get to leave the city once more and head off to the delightful Sylvan Lake, but that’s not until late afternoon so lets go and explore a bit more *ping* I receive and email from Nyquest (the company I work for) one of your fellow workers is in the same hostel! finally I get to meet a new person and explore calgary, Now that didn’t happen quite as easily as that it involved multiple emails and around a full day of pinging back and forth to finally make a meeting spot! **I can’t remember what we did or how long** so there we are it’s late afternoon waiting for are new boss to pick us up and my goodness I was as nervous as a turkey on thanksgiving. But finally we get picked up and after a metric fuck tonne of questions we arrive at the airport to pick up another councillor Yojan at the time I didn’t know that this man would become on of my best friends and camp husband. Now I backtrack imagine an irish girl, english man and a canadian in an airport waiting for a Mexican, the Canadian goes up to  a Mexican looking fellow and goes “YOJAN” I’m going to pause the blog what do you think happened here, A)It was Yojan, B)It wasn’t Yojan or C) It wasn’t Yojan and the guy seemed rather irritated to be racially profiled… If you picked C DING DING DING you’re a winner! Now I fell that that is a story better told in person if you ever speak to me I’ll tell you the story… now back to driving to Sylvan around 2 hours later we arrived tired and ready for bed and you know what I did I re-fueled my body with sleep juice

**Who the fuck though this was a good idea to write about**

Part II will include the first day of being at camp and a few highlights from training, It will be written soonTM