Let’s do a little math problem. What do 50-degree days, plus black fly bites, and the incessant need for allergy medication equal? If you answered “the best spring of your life,” you would be correct. Spring has slowly crept its way back into the Chewonki campus, and it’s glorious.
“Spring Semester” might be a bit of a misnomer. Forty kids and I were first welcomed to a winter wonderland. Every rumor of Maine’s cold (and cozy!) snowstorms was true. Feet of snow covered every inch of the campus. For the first few months, I lived in my snow pants and big red jacket, giving me the silhouette of a bowling ball. I quickly became used to snowshoeing, skiing, and quickly running from my shower to my cabin before my hair froze solid. I made friends for life during impromptu snowball fights and hot chocolate huddles, and I was sad to see it melt away.
However, as the seasons change, I am introduced to a new Chewonki. Quiet flowerbeds are starting to grow along paths without drawing too much attention to themselves. I wake up (a little later than I should) to the sound of birds chirping, yelling at me to get to my chore. Everything is yawning and stretching back to life, and I am lucky enough to see it.
Because Chewonki’s semester school is tied so deeply to place and nature, our daily lives naturally run parallel to the weather. Every class is now almost always* outside with whiteboards riddling the yards to prove it. In math class, we are going to hop into a canoe to study vectors. My friends and I eat our meals outside on the ground, ignoring the picnic tables to fit more people into the conversation.
I cannot wait to take advantage of every new nook and cranny spring has revealed. The days are longer now, which gives me more time to hike up to Upper Club (my favorite spot on the neck) and stare out into the woods, slowly turning green.
*If there is a heavy rainstorm, we stay safe and warm inside. Except for my English class; it would take a tornado sweeping up all the books for Sarah Rebick to move Literature and the Land inside.
Molly Breckman, Newark Academy, Madison, NJ