Sarath went to a week long summer camp with the boy scouts last week. This was the first time he was away from home for that long. I think I was more nervous than him which was probably expected. It is always harder on the parents than the kids. They are out there having fun.

He was at science camp in March for 3 days. That was with his school. We had the opportunity to check out the camp site before they went and it was a beautiful place. We liked it so much that Sanjay wanted to go to an overnight camp as well. I was a bit nervous then too, but not as much as I was for this one. This one was a week long and it was in the woods with proper tents and all.

I am so glad they had a pack check a week before the actual camp. The kids had to pack everything like they are going to camp and the scout masters and troop leaders check everything. This helped us plan in advance and pack everything properly. It also gave us a week to gather all the stuff we didn’t yet have. They left on Saturday morning. So, on Friday, I made him unpack his bag and repack everything just to make sure we didn’t miss anything.

Two days before he left, he was nervous. He came to me before bedtime and wanted to talk. Missing me, his dad or brother were not even in the top 6 of the list of things he was worried about. He was most worried about sleeping the in the tent and being cold at night. I sat with him patiently listening to him and reassuring him that everything will be okay.

The day before he left for camp, Sanjay was sad and upset. This is the first time he was going to be all by himself without his brother to play with. They play together a lot and since this is summer break, they play and read together all the time. I signed him up for a art classes for the entire week when Sarath would be away. He loves art. We talked and I told him I had some fun stuff planned for him.

On Saturday, we went to report early in the morning and it took them about an hour and a half to load up everything and leave. Sanjay was a bit teary eyed when we got there, but by the time they left, he was ready to come home. We went out to finish some errands, had lunch and came back. Sanjay enjoyed playing Minecraft for a while after lunch without Sarath interrupting him. In the evening, we went to Half Price Books because Sanjay has been asking for a couple of books. S and I also got carried away with the books and we ended up spending more than we wanted. Well, it is always hard to come back from that store without spending too much money.

On Sunday, we went to see Alladdin. I liked the movie, although S and I felt like they had changed the story a bit to fit the American audience. But, the thing I loved most was the costumes. They were vibrant, colorful and awesome! Sanjay enjoyed the movie. Sarath would have liked it too.

Monday came around and we were busy. Sanjay had art classes and I was busy in the morning once again getting him ready on time. It suited me well and I didn’t think about Sarath every minute of the day. I didn’t get much work done either on Monday and Tuesday. The first two days were really slow. After that the week went by really fast. Before I knew it, it was Friday and I was happy that Sarath was coming back the next day.

We received letters from Sarath on Friday. Apparently, he had posted them on Monday. It was short and simple, but he did put the required information in his letters. He wrote one for me and his dad, and one letter for Sanjay. Sanjay was super excited to receive a letter 🙂 He did mention that he was missing home food.

We took Sanjay to mini golf on Friday. We all had a blast. We planned to eat dinner there and I made the worst decision of taking a mango ice cream shake. It was very yummy, but was too big. I could only eat one fourth and the rest had to go into the freezer.

We were eagerly waiting for Sarath to be back. Saturday was as usual and as the evening got closer, I kept checking my phone for any messages of the kids coming back. We were almost leaving to pick up Sarath at the church, when he called to tell us that they were stuck in traffic and were going to be and hour late.

I was disappointed a bit and tried to do something in that one hour to keep myself engaged. An hour later, we went and they had just arrived and sorting their luggage. As soon as Sarath saw us, he came running to give me a tight hug. He usually stays away from us in public and cannot even think of giving me a hug outside our house. Seeing him run to me like that made me happy. He must have missed us so much during the week.

Here are some pictures from his first summer camp 🙂

Sarath came back all tired, sleepy and hungry. He ate anything I cooked and slept for hours. It took him a week to catch up on food and sleep. Listening to all the stories he had to tell, I am glad he got a chance to go. His face lit up when he told us all about his experiences. Apparently, he did get homesick, but the older scouts and the adult leaders helped him get over that.