Shared Joy is Twice the Joy, Shared Pain is Half the Pain

Angel Island

For the second year in a row, I went with Feelosopher’s Path on their Summer Camp Overnight. And for the second year in a row, it was awesome! This year’s overnight was on Angel Island, which meant we took trains, light rail, ferries, and our feet to get to and from our destination. Clearly it was worth it, though:

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I mean, look at that view!

Last year, I wrote a post with a lot of pictures and a lot of things the kids taught me. This year, I don’t think I tried as hard to be the perfect role model. I let conversations come with the kids when they wanted it, and I sat quietly with them when they didn’t. That doesn’t mean we didn’t search for our feelosophy.

We went down to the beach after we set up camp, and played in the sand. Before we left the beach behind, I got to lead an activity in which we wrote a message in a bottle. This week’s theme was all about being an explorer, so we wrote down a list of all the things we do that make us explorers. We encouraged whoever reads the message to contact Feelosopher’s Path, and then the kids signed the note, closed it up tight, and sent it on its way. It will be lots of fun to see if it ever comes back!

The next morning, after a sunrise hike stifled by fog on all sides, I led another – somewhat impromptu – activity while other leaders set up lunch. Down the hill a bit from our campsite was this crazy ruin. The kids went down and had fifteen minutes to explore and come up with a story as to how it got there. I’ll admit that I was hoping ofr some crazy alien and dinosaur stories, but their ideas were remarkably plausible. Maybe the flat level cement blocks were the base of a house or a stage, maybe the big circle was a well, maybe the grooves were for channeling water. I’ll admit, I was pretty stumped too.

I’ve since done a lot of research online and come up with almost nothing. One of the kids saw ‘1919’ carved into the cement, which leads me to believe that was the year it was completed. Although records indicate Angel Island was an active military base during WWI (and an active immigration station preceding WWII), that date still seems strange to me. When looking at it via google maps, I discovered both shapes are round. Google says it is a “military ruin.” Seems logical to me…perhaps an artillery station of some sort? But then, why is it overlooking the inside of the Bay and not the outside? I think it might be the remains of the water tank that burned down in the 2008 Angel Island fire. But then why are there two structures?

I’ll probably leave it alone unless somebody gives me an answer. (I’ve spent two hours on it now, and I should be asleep…)  So for now, it remains a mystery to explore. Or maybe its just a s’more.



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