54 and 55
What Young People Crave
22 – 23/2/16
Down through the rainforest.
A twisted ankle slows us up.
Waiting for abseils beside waterfalls we get a little cold.
Shafts of sunlight.
Students lead and take responsibility – navigation, belaying.
We see no other people all day which adds to the remote wilderness atmosphere.
Talk of other college trips. “The Reef was the best thing in my whole life. Arapiles. Snowboarding in Japan”.
The students were marvellous – sociable and friendly, they pushed themselves on the long walk up and out, supportive of each other, volunteered to help out. The culture was wonderful. Facilitated by the staff they had fun, enthused, were willing to give things a go. It was healthy exercise for a whole day. No social media.
Empress next day
The valley was full of cloud.
Fast and furious action was interspersed with slow walking downstream.
Abseil down in the waterfall. Excitement and a little fear.
Sparkling light rainbowed by the tumbling water and glistening the rock.
Amazing surrounds – noise, rushing water, trembling, cold, adrenaline.
I think that this is what many teenagers crave – excitement, action, extreme environments, surrounded by caring and skilled adults and supportive buddies.
What a privilege it is to be able to accompany them as they live these experiences.
I can imagine them all singing out on the bus on the way home, “Summer of 69” or some other new classic as Dan get goose bumps while driving thinking about all the good he’s just brought about for these lucky “go get” students.
An American president from the distant past said that young people have a void inside them that is aching to be filled with adventure and excitement and if we don’t help them fill it with something meaningful and wholesome they will find other ways to fill it.