1. The Camp Letters: 7

    One night at dinner, Mrs. D came to me at my cabin’s assigned table and told me I had a phone call. I followed her back into the kitchen, sat at a little table, and picked up the black receiver.

    “Jess, it’s Mom and Dad. We got all your letters and we decided it’s time for us to come for you.”

    Apparently, they had received a bunch of the letters on the same day.

    “No, it’s OK. I’m good, I want to stay. Tonight the evening activity is all-camp capture the flag against, Sangamon*!”

    July 5, 1987

    Dear Mom + Dad,

    I (Jessica B. Klein) am proud to anounce that I am staying here (Camp Betsey Cox)**. I am not homesick anymore. I think about home and I don’t cry or get upset or homesick. Forget about all the stupid homesick letters I have sent you. Don’t call.

    Yesterday night we had a big bon fire. It was neat I had a dream that I came home early from camp and we were in the car with Lisa. Then Dad stopped at a candy store. Lisa and I got really excited. Then we all went in and Dad started picking up bags and bags of candy and putting it into a box. Then he handed the box to me and told me if I payed for all the candy (50$ worth) I would not have to go home early. Then we started getting into fights and calling each other names. Then I woke up. 

    Well I’ve got to go to sleep and get ready for the next wonder exciting day.

    Write back soon!

    I love you. ‘Night mom. ‘Night Dad.



    *Sangamon was our nearby brother camp. The general consensus on the boys there can be best described in song. I, sadly, cannot remember the words, but it was comparing “the boys we call our own” to Camp Keewaydin boys who “will always be gorgeous, handsome, and 6 foot 3.”

    **I guess I was one for clarity.

    I returned to Camp Betsey Cox for two summers after that. The 2nd year Lisa came with me, and the 3rd year Sara joined us. I wish I could say I never got homesick again. But I did. I got homesick before I even left for camp. Hell, I still get homesick.

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