My girl (that's the top of her head, second from right, with her fingers in a V) hiked the Appalachian Trail with some of her fellow campers during the first week of August, then went white water rafting at the end of it. She was stoked! "I want to do that all the time when I grow up!" she told me, her words rushing against each other in that punctuated teenage way.
In short, her hike trip was magical, despite freezing nighttime temperatures and drenching rain. But even the elements couldn't douse the excitement of spending day after day with her friends under the open sky, collecting new experiences around each corner, bonding afresh on arrival at each mossy rock, thickly wooded path or pine covered hill. And she and a boy she liked talked their hearts out until way into the nights, huddled in their sleeping bags under a wide blue tarp. Does it get any better when you're 15?
On a high mountain in Maine, six of my daughter's hiking crew made this photographic homage to the week. Their hands spell out "PV Love." The initials stand for Pioneer Village, the name of their camp's home base by a lake in the woods. The love, of course, needs no explanation.