Hey friendly friends! You feel that buzz in the air this morning? It’s not from the dozen 5 Hour Energy drinks I just sucked down – it’s because we’re loading up the bus for my school’s middle school retreat!
In just a few moments, I’ll take my seat for the two hour bus ride into the deep recesses of Minnesota’s frigid wilderness, accompanied only by dozens of giggling pre-teens playfully stealing each other’s hats and babbling about Justin Bieber’s exquisite mouth. Sometime during the trip, I will demand silence from the students and deliver a 40 minute harangue about what it was like when I was a teenager: when Huey Lewis’s “Power of Love” blasted from every boom box and old Doc Brown was nothing more than a disgraced kook making side deals with Libyans. The students will likely stare back at me blankly, only escalating my agitation and forcing me to loudly, hurriedly tell them about all of my adventures through the circuits of time.
Once we arrive at the rustic retreat center, the students will get to spend the next 24 hours binging on nature. We will learn about owls and recycling and which girls have a crush on which boys. We will trudge through the woods in the bitter cold listening to some college student talk about wolves and wishing we could just go home where it’s warm and there aren’t as many wolves. Then, upon eating a breakfast of steamed eggs and gray, rubbery meat, the learning objectives of the retreat will have been accomplished. Probably the only thing worse than going on a middle school retreat would be the Bataan Death March, in which some 10,000 American and Filipino POWs died a cruel death. Aside from that though, this is the worst.
Fortunately for the students though, they don’t know that yet. Right now, they’re excited. I suppose I’m a little excited too, but mostly for the steamed eggs.
This is why I got my Master’s Degree.