Arrival at Camp Arcadia.

Getting off the plane in Boston I decided to start looking for people who were also on the Camp America program and possibly working where I was in order to find some buddies. Before getting on the plane in London I asked a few people if they were going through camp America but they were all working for another organisation and weren’t working at summer camps. Not deterred I heard two girls in the immigration line in Boston talking about camp America so once we were through to baggage reclaim I got talking to them. Their names were Abbi and Emma and it turned out they were working at the same camp as me, Result!

In order to get to our camp we had to find a bus outside the airport terminal and once on board call the camp so someone could pick us up from the final bus stop in the town of Portland and take us to camp. We got the bus outside the airport fine; however, the calling camp business was a bit harder. My own phone was dead, whilst Abbi’s and Emma’s American sim wasn’t working. Cue walking down the bus asking randomers if we could use their phone. Eventually there was this American couple that let us use their phone, somewhat reluctantly, but it was pretty important so I didn’t feel too bad. With camp called, we could relax and get to know each other on the 2 hour bus ride through the states of Massachusetts and Maine.

Once we arrived in Portland we were picked up at the bus station by a camp worker called Jack. Briefly, a bit about driver Jack – Jack was a lovely character who was a retired postal worker; he was funny, opinionated and not afraid to express those opinions. Later in camp he refused to work because he was ‘retired’ and ‘’Aint fucking doing that’ and he repeatedly swore at kitchen staff. Somewhat unsurprisingly, Jack was later sacked.

Jack drove us from the bus stop to camp which was about an hour and provided decent entertainment with his stories along the way. Towards the end it started pissing down loads. The four of us were going along country roads with no street lighting and Jack started to slow down and took a right into the woods into camp. We arrived at about 9pm and jack dropped us off outside the main lodge, the rain was stair rodding and we ran to the lodge through the rain and opened the door. Then, utter madness. About 20 counsellors were chilling in the lodge and all introduced themselves to myself, Abbi and Emma. It was all a bit of a blur really, after a 10+ hour journey I just wanted my bed, so only remembered a couple of names and filled out a form then was bundled back into Jacks car. Emma and Abbi were dropped off to their lodge first then I was driven to the all-male lodge on another part of camp. I went up to my room on the top floor of a two story wooden chalet and met my roommate for the summer. An Australian by the name of Kyle, we introduced ourselves and had a quick chat, after which we both agreed we were exhausted and collapsed on our beds.

Expectations of the Big American Adventure

So as i said in my previous post i’m working at a summer camp in Maine until late August then afterwards my visa allows me to travel around america for a month. I’ve never really worked on a summer work placement before so this will be something new. The only previous work I’ve done which is comparable is when i worked at a school in Poland for two weeks with a mate a few summers back. The work was pretty relaxed, we only led a few lessons and we lived with a family friend. Although this experience was short, it was my first real experience working with children and I really enjoyed the experience. After this I though working with children was possibly something I should consider for the future as I really enjoyed it and the children seemed to as well.

The kids we taught in Poland

I knew I wanted to do something productive after I finished University and preferably something that mixed work and travel. After some research and talking to friends I used the agency Camp America to organize working at a summer camp in America for the summer. A few friends had used the agency to work in America in previous years and said it was a great experience. So after visiting a fair and meeting with different camps I agreed to work at a camp called Arcadia in Maine as a swim teacher and lifeguard.

I’ll be working at the summer camp for 11 weeks and it is probably the next logical step after my experience in Poland. It will be very different as I will have daily responsibilities for swimming and lifeguarding and will be living with other workers for the duration of the camp. I’ve been told to expect long days from around 8am and to 8pm and to not have much free time way from camp.

However as It is an all-girls camp, us guy workers won’t be living with the campers and have our own separate accommodation. This means that we may have more free time in-between our work periods as well as in the evenings as we don’t have to look after the children like the female member of staff will.

I’m expecting to make good friends. Throughout my travels I’ve found that people who travel are extremely easy to get along with, of course not all, but most people have the mind set of meeting new people and being open to new experiences. generally I don’t know really what to expect in great detail. I’m looking forward to the experience and cant wait to get going.

I guess i should start with an introduction…

Well first of all, Hello and thank you for following my adventures. Secondly if you’re reading this, I guess I should introduce myself. My name is Michael and I’m a 23 year old Londoner who has recently graduated from Queen Mary, University of London studying geography BSc. As you have probably guessed by the title of this blog, I like to travel. I like it a lot. I-like-it-GIF

I’ve been lucky enough over the last few years to travel to some amazing places and I’ve decided to set up this blog in order to document them. One reason for this is for personal recollection and another is to share the adventure with others and hopefully encourage people to explore the world and travel.

I guess my love affair with travel started when I was 20. One weekend during my first year of Uni me and two mates got the ‘itch’ and decided to drive to Paris and stay in a great little hostel for 3 nights. It was my first time in a hostel and it felt right from the beginning. Everyone had the same mind-set of meeting new people and just wanted to have a good time. My two mates and I got talking to these 4 Kenya’s and an Israeli chick who we basically spent the weekend with. We went around Paris day and night visiting all the sites, drinking, eating and basically just had a great time. After the weekend was over we said our goodbyes and drove back to London. I left Paris with the decision made that I wanted to travel more and as often as possible.

The Tam in Paris
The Team in Paris

That summer, funded by working as a lifeguard every day I had off Uni, I Inter-railed around Europe. The next summer I traveled around South East Asia for 2 months (video Below). Now I’m sitting on a coach after flight from London to Boston on my way to start my next adventure; working at a summer camp in the USA. The camp is in the US state of Maine and I’ll be staying there for 11 weeks working as a swim teacher and lifeguard. After this my visa allows me to travel the country for 30 days until I have to return home at the end of September.

Welcome to the adventure.