Yesterday was another day with the kids from adventure camp. A few days ago I lamented that the kids preferred seeing things that were big and splashy and that even a Baltimore oriole wouldn’t be cool unless it was sitting just above their heads and singing. We did one better than the sitting, singing oriole yesterday. A scarlet tanager did just that during the 9 a.m. hike. The only unfortunate part was that the bird wasn’t performing an entire concert, just a few songs. Some of the kids couldn’t see the bird even when they appeared to be looking right at it. But most of them saw and heard it and thought it was pretty cool. Me too.
The afternoon hikes were cancelled by a severe thunderstorm, which was better, I think, than hiking in 95 degree heat. At least it was better for me. The morning was very hot and humid by 10 a.m., and it didn’t take me long before I was wondering just how I was going to make it through the afternoon hikes in that heat. Some of the kids were starting to flag after one trip partway down the mountain and then back up again. I had six such rounds to make during the day.
During the noon break I went back to the cabin, took a quick, cool shower, drank another quart of water and ate a popsicle, and even though that helped, I wasn’t sure if that was going to help enough for me to get through the afternoon. Then I got lucky.
I turned on the TV and saw the radar, a strong and severe thunderstorm was heading right in my direction. At that point, it looked as though the storm would arrive during the 2 p.m. hike. When I got back to camp, the kids for the 1 p.m. hike arrived a bit late and by then I could see the storm would not wait until after 2 p.m. So I took the kids just into the edge of the woods where they managed to find one ripe raspberry apiece and tasted a bit of sassafras. Then I took them back out of the woods and showed them the difference between a storm cloud and a regular cloud. Then we headed for the cover of a sturdy building and waited out the storm. It was a doozy. And it looks as though my luck will hold—the forecast for next week is already promising cooler weather!