As I write this the squeals of excitement from our chalutzim (campers/pioneers) who returned from massaot (trips/excursions) are emanating from the gear shed outside my office window. All the massaot are now safely back in camp or on a bus on the verge of getting to camp. From the initial reports it seems that the week was a resounding success. Chalutzim challenged themselves on the trail, on the cliffs, in the water and in their service projects. New friends were made and old bonds were strengthened. I wish that everyone who sent their children to Ramah Outdoor Adventure could be here for the time that our massaot return to the chava (ranch) because the energy in the air is palpable.
Although our Metayalim chalutzim finished their masa week yesterday with morning trip to a wolf preserve and a rained-out afternoon at Wellington Lake, today they had a chance to polish saddles in the barn, shoot arrows at the archery range, help take care of the animals at the farm and ride bikes on our trails. At the moment, they are getting ready for Shabbat by not only showering (and putting on clean clothes), but also by making challah for the entire camp community and setting fourteen tables for all of us tonight in the Chadar Ohel (dining hall).
Because the afternoon is so short, I will not write an extended blog post at this moment. We plan to upload pictures right before Shabbat, and will have the remaining ones up early next week. We also have been posting on Facebook a few pictures of many of the groups returning.
I am also pleased to report that yesterday we received our first considerable precipitation in almost 30 days. Watching rain cascade down the roofs of the tents never looked so amazing. The nearest fire, the Waldo Canyon Fire, continues to burn, but has only grown a little since yesterday. We will continue to monitor the situation around the clock, but at this point are feeling optimistic about it being brought under control well before it could threaten our camp.
I hope that everyone has a terrific Shabbat and an amazing weekend. I will write another update early next week. As always, please email or call with any questions.