Positivity Camp Part XVI
It’s been a while since new words were added to the board. This time, it isn’t Daniel who is doing the troublemaking, but is the one causing the trouble on the side of the resistance, or is he on his own side? Find out now by skipping this intro and jumping right into the action with this weeks’ Positivity Camp! Wooooooo! Haha, I’m having way too much fun with this.
“Alright, House Joy! Before you go running off to join up with your main group, we are heading to the beach for our next camp activity!”
I shook my head at the cries of excitement. If I hadn’t read the schedule, I probably would have been excited as well, but I knew better. We weren’t going to the beach for fun, we were going there to work on Camp Cleanup.
“Do we get to go swimming now?”
“Should we change?”
“Sorry, kiddos. Swimming can only be done with a lifeguard, and Positivity Camp is currently without one. We’re going down to the beach for Camp Cleanup!”
“For what?” someone groaned.
Luckily for them, Counselor Markus struggled to pinpoint who had spoken, and before he could take control of the situation, there were several more groans followed by more whining.
“Knock it off crybabies.”
And surprise surprise, the camp bully emerged from the darkness that was House Joy. Unfortunately, I did see his point. Now that we were outside, I noticed that House Joy had a range of age groups. I was among the older kids, from what I could tell. This was so much different than the group I’d left Wendy in. Still, younger kids could be annoying, as they continued to prove the point by whining and complaining further.
“Mitchel!” Counselor Markus had to shout to be heard over the arguments that had broken out.
“Sorry, Counselor Markus.”
“But maybe if there were fewer babies, I would be better behaved. Just swap out a baby or two with an older kid from another cabin.”
As much as I hated to hear Mitchel talk about the younger kids like that, I was starting to see his point as a few continued whining. It all stopped, however, as Counselor Markus silenced them with a look before turning his attention back to Mitchel.
“Mitchel! To the nurses’ station for the use of demeaning language, now!”
“Look, just move me to a different cabin!”
“All cabins are arranged this way so that all campers might experience and grow together.”
A sudden change came over our counselor as he spoke of ‘growing together.’ He became calmer and surer of himself, despite Mitchel’s outburst. We all grew quiet as he continued to spout Positivity Camp doctrines.
“The schedules you each received put you into a similar age range, but we find it important to foster positive relationships will all ages,” Counselor Markus opened his arms wide as he spoke. Then he looked at Mitchel and his face became devoid of joy or anger. “That means any cabin you go to will have a range of ages. Is that understood campers?”
“Yes, Counselor Markus!” We all shouted, even Mitchel. I could tell he had hated saying it as much as I had. The odd behavior had put me on edge and I had responded without intending to. What was this camp doing to us?
“Good, now what’s your name?” Counselor Markus asked of one of the older kids standing near Mitchel.
“Jackal?” The counselor gave him a long hard look before seeming to accept the name.
“Yes,” Jackal said after a long and awkward silence.
“Right.” Counselor Markus looked uncomfortable for a moment. “Jackal, you are to take Mitchel to the nurses’ office.”
“Why? Because he needs a refresher on what this camp stands for.”
“But why there?”
“Because Psychiatrist Pam will have him watch the Positivity Camp video.”
“Why there then?”
“I just said why, now please get going.”
It was clear to everyone that Counselor Markus was losing his patience, but I couldn’t blame him. I saw both sides of the issue. Nurse Pam or Psychiatrist Pamela had gone home for the day. So, Jackal wasn’t entirely wrong in pointing that out. It was great!
“But is she there?”
“It’s the nurses’ station, of course she is there.” He was doing his best to keep a smile on his face, but he was clearly breaking.
“Is she though?”
“Jackal, one more word, and I’ll send you both to Teacher.”
“Counselor Markus,” cool kid Tyler spoke up. I still disliked him for ditching us with Coach Tammy. “Nurse Pamela was sent home for the day.”
“That’s what I’ve been saying!” Jackal said with a glare at the counselor.
“She… Oh, right. She was sent home. Sorry, Jackal. You two are to head to Teacher then at the Art Barn. He’ll be the one to instruct you in the ways of Positivity Camp. Besides, he’ll need to make a new sign anyway.”
“An infantile one,” Mitchel said straight faced as he brushed past the now fuming counselor.
“OFF WITH YOU!”
“I was already going,” Mitchel called back.
As the two of them walked by me, Mitchel shot me a wink, and I was pretty certain I saw Jackal suppressing a laugh. I did my best to keep my features blank. Already the resistance was striking back! Though, I did worry it was doing so in a bad way.
“Let’s bring that cheer back and head down to the water front!” Counselor Markus called out in a disturbingly happy way. His face no longer held the quiet rage from before, but looked inhumanly happy.
There was no cheer as the remainder of us made our way to the water front. Counselor Markus ignored us most of the way as he radioed over to Teacher and let him know what had happened.
“Hey. Psssst. Hey. Pssssssssssst!”
I turned to see Tyler coming up beside me. I wasn’t exactly sure how I felt about that. He had that laid back, casual air about him that I didn’t like.
“What do you want?” I asked, the question coming across harsher than I had intended. “Counselor Markus is already on edge.”
“Yeah. Yeah,” Tyler said, giving a dismissive wave of his hand. The action only added to my aggravation. “Listen, find me during clean up. I have a way to sneak kids out of camp.”
“What did you just say?” I asked, shocked.
“Find me during clean up,” he answered elusively.
Before I could question him further on his crazy scheme, he darted back to a small cluster of kids. My mind was whirling with questions, concerns, and revised schemes even as we made our way down the giant stone steps leading down to the water front.