Field trip season is upon us, and like everything else in a small, isolated place, resourcefulness and creativity take center stage when planning something the kids haven't done and seen before---and I've been lucky enough to go on a few really fun trips the last few weeks.
The digital photography class at the high school took a photography trip all over the base. I had been to three of the four stops, but you always find something new to photograph. The poor museum was almost destroyed during hurricane Sandy, and I'm hoping that the person who told me that the museum and lighthouse are slated to be torn down was wrong.
Several boats used by Cuban exiles are on display--and they are in really sad condition. I wish someone would make this a project and restore them before they completely rot away.
I enjoyed taking pictures and hanging out with a fun group of kids. I've worked with their class a few times this year, and some are very talented photographers in their own right---I love to watch other people take pictures. What do they find interesting that I've missed? The weather was absolutely gorgeous, which made it the perfect short and sweet excursion. Can you imagine having to go back to work after a morning like this?
Or like this?
Then there was the Amazing Base field day---the 6th through 12th graders split into teams and were driven by Coasties all over the base, solving clues and doing tasks that dealt with our base's sometimes strange and always unique past, starting with monuments from the Spanish-American War. We went to historical sites and even the radio station (where the kids had to use a card catalog to find records---some of them had never seen either---and I was in heaven). I even ran straight up a humongous and steep hill (I like to think of it as a small mountain), which wasn't a good idea since I RAN MY FIRST 10K THE NEXT MORNING.
Did you catch that? Yes, I ran a 10K. It wasn't pretty---mostly because I was dehydrated from running up hills and such in the crazy loco heat---but I did it!
Today was another adventure, this time with my youngest's class. The gracious (and patient) captain and crew took them out on the tugboat, which was all fine and dandy until the kids got to drive the boat.
And how would you drive a boat if you were six or seven again?
They were cutting donuts, nautical style. Dios mio, I wanted to barf before it was over. They also got to blast the horn, see the water hose in action, and play around with the speaker system. One kid went into the "ladies and gentlemen, fasten your seatbelts" speech that flight attendants always give. Never mind that there were no seatbelts or seat backs to adjust, no cards in the seats in front of us or no cushions that double as a floatation device. THAT is how you know you are with DoDDS kids---they have more frequent flyer miles than most adults, and they know that speech verbatim.
On to more adventures as we are winding down towards the goal---summer vacation! Only two more weeks of school. The countdown is on.