A Drive Through Foss | Teen Ink

A Drive Through Foss MAG

October 18, 2021
By Anna_Lieberman BRONZE, Newfields, New Hampshire
Anna_Lieberman BRONZE, Newfields, New Hampshire
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Every June, I get a similar dream. It is one of the few recurring dreams that I have, and unlike most people, who consider such dreams frightening, I love this dream. 

The dream starts with me in my car, sitting in the backseat with my sister. We pull into camp, and I get out and say goodbye. I briskly walk over to the sign-up table, eager to find out what cabin I’m in. Then it fades. I wake up in my bed. The walls are painted and the floor is carpeted, instead of the rough wood that is so familiar in the cabins at camp. My heart sinks. Only a few more weeks until I go. 

Weeks later, and I’m gripping on to a clear plastic box with all shades and colors of thread crammed neatly in rows. We take a right onto a gravel road, passing the “Welcome to Camp Foss!” sign. My stomach knots, mostly with excitement and anticipation. What cabin will I be in? Who will my counselors be? Will the girls be funny, nice? The wheels slowly roll over the gravel, and my heart speeds up. 

We pass the rec hall, with the big red painted rock out front. I imagine the inside, where we take shelter on rainy days. Wooden benches line the walls, and plaques from past years of campers and staff are strung across the wood panels. A stage on the far end meets the thin layer of dust that covers the floor. That stage has housed countless dances, talent shows, and plays. Mirrors line the other wall, and I can still hear the music playing over and over as my cabin stood in front of those mirrors, trying to dance in sync. 

Then there is the dining hall. As soon as anyone steps into that space, all you can hear is the clanking of dishes, and the laughing girls. It is long and thin, with at least 20 circular tables. Those tables have survived countless chocolate milk, cereal, dressing, and water spills. The food isn’t great, but the memories are. Not one meal goes by where you aren’t laughing the whole time. 

The pathway continues, and to the left is center camp. Center camp is like a valley, with a flat rock right in the middle. In the morning we start our days there, seeing the whole camp, and in the nighttime, we end our days there with everyone. 

On the other side is the waterfront. A steep sandy hill leads down to the beach, lined with kayaks and canoes. A rainbow of color. Every day without fail, like the sun shining down on us, the music is blasting. The water is cold, and no one really wants to swim, but once we jump in, we forget all about it. We laugh and sing, and we are warm. 

Deflated basketballs and muddy kickballs greet us at the rec field. Six cabins and woods flank the field on either side. Wooden bleachers are in U formation, usually wet from people coming from the pond. The rec field is a place for many occasions. During the day, we play soccer, lacrosse, frisbee, and kickball. At night, the fire crackles and the smell of roasting marshmallows fills the air. We watch movies, or eat on the grass, towels beneath us, and the stars above us. And on some days, it is a swarm of red and blue, during an intense game of capture the flag. 

You can smell the cabin before you see it. Towels line the stairways, caked in dried sand. The aroma of pond water from days ago lingers on them. The scent of Febreze sprayed hastily to cancel out the scent of the towels adds a strange moldy-meets-tropical aroma. The door opens with a squeak, and inside is like a whole other world. The sun shines on the wood, making it a deep golden brown. Six sets of bunk beds line the sides and back of the cabin. Shoes and bathing suits are strewn across the floor, laying on top of the layer of sand and dirt that is always there, no matter how much we sweep. Polaroids from previous days hang up on the walls, along with letters from home. If you look closely, you can spot bags of chips, and cans of lemonade placed precariously on the rafters. The cabin is our home for two weeks, and the people inside, our family. 

After attending camp for five years, I have finally come to the conclusion of why I love it so much. Not because of the rec hall, or the dining hall, or even the waterfront, lined by the docks. Not by the rec field, or the tennis courts, or even center camp, where we spend so much time making friendship bracelets, buying sweatpants from the store, or playing gaga ball. No, it is not any of those things. It is the people you meet, the bonds you create. Being with the same 11 people for 2 weeks straight makes you pretty close. Every June, I have a similar dream. It is one of the few dreams that I have that recur, and unlike most people, whose recurring dreams are frightening, I love this dream. For it is a dream where friends become family, and a place becomes a home, and that home becomes one of my favorite places on earth. 

The author's comments:

This piece is about a camp that I have gone to for 5 years, and it is definitely a huge part of who I am today. I wanted to highlight the different places at camp, but also how much more the people at camp mean to me. 

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