Yes, I know. The church isn’t supposed to be retreating. We are to advance, as an army victorious! But we took a break to rest, regroup, and retreat over the weekend, and we liked it!
Last year’s gathering at Piney Woods was our first, though the event had been happening for years without us. This year, the kids wouldn’t let us off the hook. We were forced to go. They even paid for a portion of it when we hemmed and hawed about the expense. There was no way out. It was awful.
It was wonderful.
Aside from canoes and kayaks and friends and fabulous food, it was also peaceful and beautiful and just plain fun. Bethany was in awe of “pumpkin pines” all over the ground – pine cones, of course – and PerryBoy (who has announced his intention to be known as Batman Perry or Monster Perry rather than Little Perry) spent nearly the entire time in a canoe perfecting his paddling technique.
The girls had a grand old time at the dance on Saturday night, topped off with midnight pizza, while the grownups stayed up way past bedtime. Perry and I learned to dance the exhilarating and complicated Posties Jig with 3 other couples.
Lydia, Natalie and Perry rocked the airsoft war. I think our girls put to rest any doubts that young ladies could take the heat, and Perry (Big Perry, that is. Not Batman Perry) had a glorious scene as Rambo in which he ran through the woods mowing down rows of outclassed combatants with his superior firepower. He expects to come up against some heavier weaponry next year.
And then there was the ropes course.
Kaitlyn suited up first.
The first part of the course was climbing a pole and walking across another pole, using the rope as necessary to balance. Kait did it with panache, I think. I’m not sure what panache is, but it sounds cool and collected.
Lydia suited up too, and took on the course.
After the balance beam, the next task was to cross the converging cables. Stand on one cable and hold the other in your tightly clenched fists. As you inch along, the cable in your hands converges with the one under your feet, then another cable rises from your feet. The trick is to keep your grip and balance as you transition from one to the other.
Megan did it too.
I know this guy:
He did the course just like the kids, zipline and all – but that’s not all. I haven’t told you yet about the scary part of the ropes course. Oh, you thought it was scary already?
The second part requires an additional harness. They call this part of the course the Pamper Pole. I’ll let you figure out why.
When you reach the last step, you’re not done yet.
Stand upright and brace yourself. The next step’s a doozy.
Technically, you’re supposed to try to catch the trapeze. Good luck with that.
I know this is a photo-heavy post. Maybe you’d like to be done now? But I have a few more photos I’d like to show off. I did the ropes course too. It was THE MOST TERRIFYING THING I’VE EVER DONE. CAN YOU SEE ME STILL HYPERVENTILATING 2 DAYS LATER?
I think I was more scared than anyone else there. For that, I get a separate post. Also, I have a knot in my stomach just from looking at the photos of my turn. I’m not sure I can edit and upload them without a drink first. What? I’m a presbyterian.by