It was the hottest day of July, the day before the trip and the day the plague hit.
When I say plague I sure as hell mean full on PLAGUE.
It all started Wednesday night, when we noticed someone was missing – the parent volunteer. Locked away in her cabin with a garbage can and water bottle she sat, blowing chunks. All afternoon.
No biggie, we’d be fine without her on the trip tomorrow. Wrong. We still had twenty-one of us – we can handle these kids at a provincial park. The kids are gonna have fun on this trip. WRONG.
We figured that because the parent volunteer had quarantined herself for the past 4 hours that it was now an isolated incident. Ha! NOPE.
Don’t get me wrong, a parent volunteer at camp is a god-sent-entity but when that volunteer helicopters around their kids (who happen to be at camp) with the stomach flu, things can get real ugly real quick.
Which, of course, is exactly what happened.
The way we do it at our camp is we pair up the oldest campers with the youngest to help the newbies learn the ropes – also because we don’t want to tie up their shoe laces again… Now, don’t forget that the volunteer has kids, these two kids are in the oldest group of campers – which means they each have little baby-buddies to look out for.
You can see where I’m going with this. Right?!
So with the morning of the trip came the plague, in full force.
(This was NOT a time of sunshine and rainbows)
Four campers and three counselors down for the count, struck by the plague with several more complaining about woozy tummies – except for that one counselor who got stung by a bee…on the eyelid (who gets a bee sting on their eyelid?!).
Down to eighteen, we rolled the lunch coolers and water jugs onto the busses followed by the remaining campers and off we went.
All was good on the big yellow tin-can-on-wheels, until that curvy highway road. With 15 minutes of the ride left that’s when it hit.
“OH GOD! SHE THREW UP – DON’T GET IT ON ME!!!”
The plague was creeping in, taking camper after camper into its vomit-y clutches. Not long after the first, another holler of horror was let out as yet another camper barfed up her breakfast all over the floor, her shoes and her backpack. Meanwhile the first kid was ready for round two.
With a vomit coated floor and a baseball-cap full of puke we were down two more campers.
Once we finally got to where we were going, I rushed my bus’ campers off the non-air-conditioned-macaroni-smelling bus and into the shade of the nearest tree. We called all the counselors into a huddle and decided to cut this trip short.
At this point we had eight over-heated-nauseous campers, three sympathy pukers and eighteen irritated counselors on this trip and things were NOT looking up.
So with a quick lap around the Provincial Park’s visitor’s centre and a stroll to a big rock we loaded up the busses and booked it back to camp. Dumped the sicko kids in the nurses cabin and hauled the rest off to the pool – armed with boxes of desert-dry saltine crackers.