This year, the group was together with Costin, the psychologist of Familia AMURTEL, and our loyal Dada Subuddhyananda – a veteran of these camps. The adventure began with backpacking through the mountains to reach a special lake with an interesting history – it is actually a submerged village that was flooded during Ceaucescu’s reign in order to create a resevoir. Only a church steeple can still be seen above the water’s surface. The boys learned kayaking and also constructed rafts from truck tires and crossed the lake on them. It was a challenging problem solving experience – but as Ionut said “No problem, we can figure it out!”. Meanwhile Stefan and Bogdan swam in the lake, and encouraged the younger ones to learn swimming as well.
They also built catamarans using surfboards, wood planks, string and a piece of canvas. The next day, the group put on backpacks and began hiking. They faced a big challenge – a powerful thunderstorm, with torrential rains and strong winds. But they did not give up nor get discouraged, but quickly divided duties. Ionut and Bogdan collected firewood, while Florin and Stefan made a shelter out of a big tarp where the group huddled to stay dry. Andrei and Daniel brought water and Ionut Zaharia helped build the fire. It was an unforgettable experience.
The third day, the group hiked through the forests of Sovata and through the village. The children were very enthusiastic and reached all of the destinations that the instructor proposed. In the afternoon, they got to go swimming in the salt water “Bear’s Lake”.
The last day was spent in the ropescourse – where the group did many difficult exercises, including the infamous trapeze challenge – in which one must climb a 4 meter wooden pole and then jump to a trapeze bar. Stefan and Bogdan were extremely courageous – having performed this feat last year as well. Ionuts
overcame his fear and managed in the end to accomplish all of the exercises.
It was wonderful to see how all of the children grew in their sense of responsibility, bravery and teamwork through these experiences.