Another Fun Day at Camp

To begin the day, Mary and  Mary Lou enjoy a country walk along the streets of Chlewiska outside the Reymontowka Manor House. The diversity of landscape includes fields and forest trees dotted with uniquely designed houses not common to cities like Warsaw. Yesterday, on our return trip by car from Siedlce, Marek Błaszczyk, the Director of Reymontowka, had pointed out a site where he will build a summer house for retirement in this beautiful part of eastern Poland.

Our camp schedule is now settling into its new normal. We volunteers plan for three sessions with our groups of 6 or 7 campers. The fourth session is planned by all volunteers together for the entire camp and today the activity was Karaoke. It both amazed and amused us how these Polish youths know so many popular American songs in English. It was great fun to hear their voices jubilantly singing Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off,” the “Let It Go” theme song from the movie Frozen, or “Uptown Funk You Up” with Bruno Mars.

Highlights of our volunteer activities planned for the campers are as varied as we are. Jim used the Siedlce local newspaper and asked his campers to choose an article to read in Polish. Then they were each to share in their best English what was being reported in the article. Of interest was the news that someone is driving a car from China to Poland, or that drugs were discovered in a bouquet of flowers.

John quizzed his campers on the presentation about Milwaukee, WI that Jim had given the day before. He was pleased that his crew had paid attention and were mostly able to correctly answer questions about the five types of sausages, including Polish, that Milwaukee is known for or that their very modern art museum is in the shape of a bird.

Francine’s campers responded enthusiastically to the card game “Sorry”. Players need to ask one another for a card such as the ace of spades. Not certain of the pronunciation of ace, one camper inquired if she should say “ass” (short vowel sound) or aaaass (long vowel sound). Francine astutely replied that it is important to know the difference. For if you call someone an ace, you are calling them an exceptional person, but if you call someone an ass, well, you have called them the opposite!!!

430Esther and Gregg decided it was time to challenge another group to a game of Flyswatter. They invited Jim’s group and the tournament was on. Campers stood along both sides of a table filled with picture cards of foods. A food name was called and the team member who first swatted the right picture card correctly earned a point for the team. The tournament was a rowdy and well-loved activity.

Mary Lou has discovered that her group truly enjoys the activity of jumping rope. Two at a time the campers take turns jumping as the rest of the group sings out a jump rope rhyme called The Boyfriend. The timing was serendipitous as yesterday’s evening camp activity was The Dating Game. Tonight’s evening event features Karaoke once again only with songs in Polish.

As we are looking forward to free time on the weekend, this afternoon Dorota escorted three of us to the local train station in Kotun. We purchased tickets for the four of us who wish to go to Warsaw or the two who plan to go to Kraków. Dorota sees to our every need or want and to her I wish to extend a hearty dziekuje bardzo!

Journal by Mary Lou.

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