Sunday, August 20, 2006

summer camp

hey all

i know it's been a while since i've posted anything, but i've been busy (i promise). not much has been going on for me in the stan. . . school starts in a couple of weeks. i'm both dreading the loss of all of my free time and looking forward to having actual stuff to do. i hope that my last school year in the kz is a good one.

oh, the title of the post is "summer camp" so i guess i should tell you about my summer camp. like i've been saying for the past few months, i have been planning a summer camp for quite some time now --

(side bar - i want to see how many times i can type the words "summer camp" in this post. i'm aiming for about 15. can i do it? place your bets now!)

--the summer camp was last week. all and all it went pretty well. we had a total of 19 kids come from all over the region and they were given lessons in english and youth leadership -- youth leadership being the focus of the summer camp. the lessons weren't really the most interesting or funniest parts of the summer camp, but i figured i should tell you that there really was an educational purpose for the summer camp before i tell you all the funny/interesting stuff that happened.

summer camp highlights!:

1. i won first prize in the camp dance competition on the first night we were at the summer camp. here's how it happened: there were evening events planned everynight at the "camp disco" which was open to everyone, not just members of my group. my girls decided that they wanted to enter this dance competition. foolishly, i walked into their cabin as one of the girls was putting together a routine. "miss ashli," they said, "show us some american dance moves we can use for the competition." as you all know, i do enjoy a little dancing now and then, so i said, "ok, here ya go!" and i did a couple of what i thought were really lame dance moves. the girls were all, "that was the best dancing we've ever seen. you will dance for us at the competition." WHAT? "no, it's ok, miss ashli, valya will dance with you."

so there i was, a grown-ass, 23 year old woman, entered into a dance competition, competing against 15 and 16 year olds. i asked ann, who came with me to the camp, what i should do. "you CAN'T try," she said, "because if you try to beat a bunch of high schoolers, then that's sad." ok, i can't try. what exactly does that mean? but then, another student, nurtas said, "miss ashli, if you win, i will make you beshbarmak." well, hot damn. i guess my kids wanted me to win. that means i would have to try.

so, long story short, me and valya rocked out hard to shakira's "hips don't lie". we won. nurtas owes me beshbarmak.

2. there was a fight. apparently high schoolers are the same everywhere. one night at the disco, some of my boys tried to dance with some girls from another city. the boys from that city took exception to my boys dancing with their girls, so the next morning (now really, who fights in the morning?) those boys came and started a fight with my boys. the details are sketchy for me, as the story was related to me in russian by some rather frightened teenagers, but the other boys were bad, my boys did nothing wrong but they still managed to win the fight. as a teacher, i was officially appalled that my students would get into those kind of shenanigans. as a person, i'm glad my boys whomped some ass.

3. i climbed a mountain. the summer camp organizers offered an excursion -- a "nature walk" they called it. nature walk, my ass! we climbed straight up a freaking mountain. we didn't have ropes or anything, but there were points where i was definitely scaling rocks to get to the next rest stop. it took three hours. by the time everyone got back down off of that horrid mountain of doom, sveta (our school psychologist) and i had decided that there would be no lessons that day (not because we thought the kids were too worn out, but because we were tired as shit), and we would instead watch earnest goes to camp.

4. summer camp, summer camp, summer camp, summer camp. 15 times! i win again!!

so, that's all i got right now. more later.


ps -- props to jason for entering the dc aids marathon. i've never been prouder, hon! kick that marathon's ass!!


Blogger sherry said...

hey girl!
summer camp sounds fun!
i wanted to take my "summer camper" for a spin but, wouldn't ya know, you gotta put ga$ in the dang thing to make it go!
things are weird here... nobody wants to talk about it i guess... but, let it suffice that the lunatics are in charge of the asylum here in the good ol' USA. [shiver]
anyhoo, yer dad's still kickin' just laying low, (and loves you bunches, but you knew that! :-))
take care, and don't be surprised if you find yer mug in a classic painting! (check my blog)
love ya!

2:10 AM  
Anonymous Jason said...

Thanks for the marathon shout out, Ashli!!!

If any of Ashli's blog readers are interested in sponsoring me, you can do so online at:

xoxo, 'shli!


5:53 PM  

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