26 March 2008

The Camp

I've talked a bit about the camp/conference, so I guess I should go into a little more detail. We were asked to be chaperones, but that really meant "chefs." The other couple that chaperoned with us were Matthew and Makareta. STOP! Before you think twice about her name, I have to tell you how to say it because I KNOW how you just read it in your head with your thick American accent, and it was wrong and ugly! The "r" is rolled, like a Spanish name. Other than that, it sounds pretty much the same as "margarita" but with a "k" in the middle, and without that first "r."

Matt and Makareta had come over to our house the Tuesday before the camp to celebrate St. Patrick's Day one day late. Of course, they brought their man-cub, William. He is about 14 months old and adorable. We decided we definitely liked hanging out with them and playing games with them on Tuesday, so we were happy to learn that the four of us would be chaperoning the YSAs at their camp.

On Friday, the four of us headed out to Waikouaiti, where the camp was held. We got there early, so we went to the beach. Not to swim, because it's cold here. You don't swim in the beaches here. That is, you don't swim unless you are Eric. And then when Eric swims Matt has to swim too. While the wives look on and think the husbands are just being ridiculous. And I tricked the baby into eating some bull kelp from off the ground. (The thing is, the baby will eat ANYTHING if you say "mmmmmmmMmmMMm," so I really had to do it!)

While we were at the beach, I waded in the water for about 10 minutes, basically the length of time it took for me to not be able to feel my feet. And then I was cold, so Matt gave me his sweater to wear. I felt a little silly wearing his sweater, but Makareta assured me that it was not really his because she wears it more than he does. So then I felt okay about it.

That day we went to the camp and met the YSAs. We ate dinner and did general playing around type things. On Saturday, the YSAs went down to the beach to clean it while Makareta and I readied lunch. The boys helped. That evening there was a hangi, a traditional Maori meal that is cooked underground (in theory). And that night there was a dance. While the younguns danced, the married played cards. Rook, to be precise.

Sunday was Easter, and we had church in the lobby. It was a nice meeting. That evening we had a traditional Easter dinner of spaghetti. Wait, not traditional at all. We are in New Zealand, where is the lamb? Actually, there were only 2 ovens, which is the reason for the lack of traditional roast of some kind. That afternoon were workshops, and Eric taught an excellent workshop on goal-setting. Such a cute husband, that one.

Also, Eric totally forgot his Sunday shirt, so he had to borrow Matt's, which was too small. So he put a sweater on over the top so it didn't look so bad, and he actually looked very smartly dressed.

That night the four of us went for a walk on the beach because it was a full moon. Matthew was wearing his sweater, and he joked about it being the "communal" sweater. I said, "Well, not really because Makareta hasn't been wearing it." Matt replied, "She's been sleeping in it every night." So, truly, the communal sweater.

Then, back to camp for sleeping. Only the boys didn't sleep. They played games involving a hill and tires.

On Saturday the festivities continued. Everyone participated in rolling tires down the hill at various human targets. The night before, a girl had rolled down the hill in the tires, and she loved it so much she did it FOUR times. I figured that if I had been awake, I also would have participated in this activity. Despite Eric's warnings, I climbed in a stack of tires, and the boys put more tires over my head. Then they rolled me down.

And the tires slipped off and spread out. And I banged my head like 3 times. I'm still paying for that. Really, though, it was quite fun. Besides the banging head.

Then we cleaned up and came home.

We had a lot of fun. We loved getting to know the BYU students who were studying abroad in Invercargill. Plus, it was great to get to know the YSAs in our branch. Such great people! And, of course, we loved spending time with Matthew and Makareta. So much so that on the drive home (we rode together) they asked if we wanted to come to their house for dinner, and I said, "Well, William is still not calling us 'mom' and 'dad,' so it is clear we haven't spent enough time together yet!"


Janssen said...

So I read this entry and at the end when you talked about it being BYU students I thought "hmm, Noelle's little sister is on study abroad in NZ. I wonder if she was there." And then, I went to her blog and, what a coincidence, she too had written about a Youth conference. But I wasn't sure it was the same one. But there was a picture of people rolling tires. "It must be the same one," I thought. So I clicked on the tire rolling picture and hey, there's Eric in that picture, looking blurry, but very Eric-ish nonetheless.

Random, eh?

Marcindra LaPriel said...

Wow. That is a small world.

I remember all this fun! Katie Jo did have heaps of fun rolling in tires. Gosh I wish I had pictures of that! I'm really happy we met you there. The YSA Conference is on the list of highlights in New Zealand.