Saying Goodbye to my Favorite Place in the World

I started going to Camp Na’aleh the summer of 2010. Before going to this camp, I knew two people. We had been friends since kindergarten and they finally convinced me to go to their camp for a summer. Previously, I had gone to another sleepaway camp that I hated. It was too big, the food was bad and my friends were homesick the whole time. So when I got on the bus for this camp for the first time I was skeptical. It quickly turned into my favorite place in the world.

 

I went to this camp for seven years and each summer was equally amazing. It’s where I met my closest friends and have the best memories from. Each summer I would come home from camp and talk my parents ear off about camp; it’s all I would talk about. My friends and family heard the same stories over and over again, from themed days to Shabbat I told them all of the stories I could think of.

After my first summer as a camp counselor, the summer of 2016, my camp closed. At first, I didn’t know how to react. I was upset, sad and frustrated at the thought that I could no longer spend summers at my favorite place. I thought about all the memories and friends that I had met along the way at the camp and was saddened that it would never be the same. I used to have countdowns to go to camp, from the last day of camp to the day I would leave.

 

Now, two years after closing it’s still one of my favorite places. I haven’t been back since it’s closing, but I still see my friends from camp. They’re some of my closest friends and we still stay up late telling stories from camp that we’ve all heard before. I’m still sad that the camp closed, but I’m grateful for the friendships and memories that I made there.