The IXs Country Trip is almost always a highlight of any student’s time at City and Country, and it certainly was for me. Aside from getting to shoot a bow and arrow, canoeing on the lake, and fighting with Calhoun over who got to play gaga, one of the most fun parts of the trip was the independence we got. For many of us, it was one of the first times that we had this kind of responsibility. We had to manage not to cut ourselves with a knife, build a wagon and pull it through the forest, and make sure we did not fall into the river. However, when you give a group of nine-year-olds this type of responsibility for the first time, things can sometimes go south.
The most memorable event for me was cutting myself with a knife. For our last dinner on the trip, we prepared a “feast,” that included a stew, bread, and some of the jam and beef jerky we made in Science beforehand. For the drink, we decided to make lemonade, which I volunteered to help with. My task was to cut the lemons, which I chose to do with a butcher knife. The reason that someone brought a brand-new, sharpened butcher knife on the Country Trip has to do with Hanna Kenyatta. One of the items that we were supposed to bring was a pocket knife, but Hanna decided that instead of bringing a pocket knife, she would bring a large butcher knife.
So I went and got Hanna’s knife for the lemons, not entirely aware of how sharp a brand new knife is. In retrospect, I probably could have handled the knife more carefully, but I was not prepared for how sharp this butcher knife was. While the cut was pretty bad, thankfully it happened towards the end of the trip, so it wasn’t ruined. The one good part was that I did not have to help unpack the bus, though that was because I had to go to the hospital.
However, that was not the only incident that occurred on the trip. Skuli Baumgardner and I seemed to have bad luck. We were in the same room, and somehow, I always seemed to injure him accidentally. I wouldn’t punch him or anything, but something weird would happen, like I would close a door and a broom would fall on his head. While that happened a couple of times, two events were particularly memorable. The first one happened after I had just taken a shower. I was walking back to our room in flip-flops when I slipped on a puddle of water in our doorway. I slid backward, and while I did not fall, one of my flip-flops came flying off and hit Skuli, who unfortunately happened to be standing in front of me, square in the forehead.
The other event that sticks in my head also involved Skuli, but in this case, I did not directly hurt him. We were all walking over a river on the rocks, and Skuli was the last one to cross. As he was going over, I reached out my hand to help. However just as he was about to grab it, Lilly Meyer rushed over with a log she had found, pushing me out of the way. She reached it out for Skuli to grab onto but must have been a bit too eager because she hit Skuli once again, in the head, but this time actually knocked him into the river.
However, despite cutting myself and all the other incidents that occurred, the Country Trip was still one of my favorite parts of going to City and Country. Getting to be with my friends and doing fun activities, all while being away from school for a week, has been one of the most memorable parts of all my thirteen years at City and Country.
I have been at this school for most of my life and while the transition to my next school probably will not be the easiest, if City and Country has taught me anything it is how to adapt and how to be comfortable in new situations. Getting to go on the Country Trip to learn about the Oregon Trail, actually build models to learn about physics and engineering, and take a trip to the Met when we wanted to learn about a piece of art, have all been incredible experiences. These activities are what make me enjoy going to this school, and while I am excited to move on, I will always remember what this school has taught me.