Friday, January 9, 2015

Keepsake Album Day 15: Friendship Bracelet

"Boubínský prales" by Josef Váchal, woodcut
Dear People,
The camera on my phone that I usually use has been missing
along with my phone, so I took this beauty with my webcam. 
This is a wacky photo of a drawing of a friendship bracelet given to me by two girls who were in my cabin at a camp I counselled at in the Czech Republic between my first and second years of secondary school. The camp was pretty bad. It rained for most of the time, we had terrible food and not enough of it and our facilities were disgusting and decrepit. The reason that kids chose our camp was because it was the cheapest one in the Republic. Our program was poor and the directors did not care what went on at the camp.

It was a gruelling two weeks. But they were vital for me. My best friend Barbora was another counsellor and we bonded through our time at the camp. And I came close with three girls from my cabin. Two sisters and their friend. The younger sister was named Lucie and she worshipped me. Her sister and friend were about 13 years old and they became very close with me as well. We helped each other survive the horrific camp. After the camp ended I kept in contact with the girls by writing messages on Facebook every few months. I remember how we said a tearful goodbye and I promised that I would come visit them in their town several hours away from my own. I remember one of the girls saying mournfully that she knew that would never happen. Her disbelief that we would ever see one another again stayed with me. It felt like a challenge. I was determined that I would eventually visit them. 

I did. It took three years before I finally had some free time and money to take the three trains and two buses to go to their town. They had changed a lot. The older sister and friend were 16 and Lucie was 12. I met their mother who welcomed me like another daughter. I stayed two days and a night. We went bowling and had dinner. We walked around their city and visited a gallery with work by a wonder Czech artist called Josef Vachal. I loved seeing the girls even though it was hard to find things to talk about when we hadn't seen one another for years. I felt so responsible for them during our time at camp and it felt like an important thing to visit them and show them that I still cared about them and valued them. 

So this is the bracelet they made for me at camp. I also have a beautiful teacup that their mother gave to me. It was their grandmother's. I have it packed away somewhere, otherwise I would have drawn it here. 

This is the end of my Keepsake series for now. I am leaving the Czech Republic to return to school on Sunday. I hope that I can continue blogging when I get back to school, but it always gets crazy. I might not be as prolific. 

Bye for now, Friends!


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