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Monday, 16 July 2007

Old Friends, Camp and Kisses

By kenju of Imagine What I'm Leaving Out

An old song I used to sing at camp goes: "Make new friends but keep the old, one is silver and the other's gold." How true. I had a call from an old school friend tonight bearing tidings of another classmate who has had a rough time of it physically and is down to 124 pounds, probably less than she weighed while in school. I suspect we all want to lose weight - but NOT that way. Get well, D.

Speaking of camp, as a child I attended summer camps that were built and maintained by Union Carbide (you had to be the child of an employee). After posting a comment recently on another weblog (wherein I mentioned the camp), I received an email informing me that there is a website devoted to the camps, with photos, maps, song sheets and reminiscences.

How unimaginable to me that there is someone who remembers so fondly his days at summer camp that he would devote an entire site to them. But I am glad he did as it may be able to put me in touch with fourth grade chums. My family moved around quite a bit when I was small, so I knew these people for 3-4 years and then we moved and I had to go to another school.

The camps have been having reunions in July and I may attend just so I can see my old friends again. I remember countless hours spent with them cutting out paper dolls and sitting in a dark closet telling ghost stories.

I also remember my first kiss. It was from an older guy of 12 and a "man of the world" to us girls, who lined up and kissed him one after another, time after time. The trouble (which we didn't know then) was that he really didn't know how to kiss any more than we did! I still remember the feeling of his teeth smashing into my bruised lips, which were cut on the inside by my braces.

His idea of a kiss was to bang mouths together like you might hit a nail with a hammer. At the time we thought this must be how it is done; most of us did not have TV then, and we were not taken to see movies in which people kissed. My movie fare at the time was westerns, with Hopalong Cassidy and Gene Autry being the favorites, and they only kissed their horses.

At 15, I met someone who did know how to kiss and that was the end of westerns for me.

[EDITORIAL NOTE: The Elder Storytelling Place is running short of new stories again, so if you have something that you've been meaning to send in, now would be a good time.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 02:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


Thanks, Ronni!

What a great story! I remember one Christmas when I was 13 demonstrating "French kisses" for my little cousins. My Aunt Mary walked in and asked, with admirable calm, what I was doing. I explained that a French kiss is one where the man bends the lady over backward before he smooches her. "Oh," said Aunt Mary, "that's OK then. It's just that when I was young there was something different called French kissing." "Oh, Aunt Mary," I said in world-weary tones, "I guess things have probably changed since then."

I think I knew a guy like you were talking about. Played Post Office with him once.Unfortunately, he called the "rush number" and got to kiss every girl in the game.The only difference was,HE had the braces and all the poor girls were left cut and bleeding from his kissing techniques, which were not unlike your friend's. He told us he had learned how to kiss at the movies and we made him promise not to go to any more Dracula pictures!

I remember that quote Judy. Those summer camp days are some of the best times that we take with us throughout our lives. I hope you do get in touch with some of your old friends...it's so heartwarming.

As far as your first kiss....ouch. Mine was very pleasantly different, as you might remember from one of my posts. Thanks for a nice nostalgic post Judy.

Great story, Judy! My first kiss was at age nine when two buddies of a boy in my class named David chased me & held me so he could give me a birthday kiss. I blushed and ran all the way home afterward. Not an auspicious beginning. Sigh.

Now you've got me thinking about summer camp and kisses, which didn't go together, for me! LOL!

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