What Paper Makes Us

At camp you can be anything with only a bit construction paper and an imagination.  The culmination of my paper-craft came last night at “International Night” when my group and I presented on Antarctica wearing black t-shirts with white paper bellies taped onto them, orange construction paper beaks over our noses and black paper bow-ties made for our last groups prom.

If you have never seen penguins dance to Ice Ice Baby then I suggest you enroll in Village Camps Austria.

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We High Fived a Fly Flying By

Yesterday I was sitting by the pool with Paige Burger and I was feeling pretty good about my day. In the morning I’d taken the English class to an amazing museum dedicated to the Hohe Tauern high alpine national park that we live just below. In the afternoon, somehow, Paige and I ended up with responsibility for playing ultimate frisbee with five of the cool older kids. We taught the game quickly then played hard for an hour until everyone was gasping and drenched in sweat. Then we went next door to the pool.

As we were sitting at the pool, basking in the warm afternoon sun, watching storm clouds build off in the distance I was inspired to a high five with Paige.  After our hands separated we saw a fly spiraling down. We’d high-fived a fly that was flying by.

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Teacher Profile

By Celine Wagner

Ian is 19 years old, he’s born in New York 1984?  (in his fave countre) Ian has brawn hair and brawn eyes.  He is 1m and 88cm tall?  He likes to smile and he likes to teach.  Ian’s hobby is canoeing and drawing.  He likes canoeing because he likes the river and he said it is all ways beautiful on the river.  He likes drawing because then he always remember where he was.  IAN’S fave food is like my sushi, he also likes hamburger but I don’t like that.  His best friend called Begay [BJ] and his nature name Snake.  Ian’s fave animal called a dog and I like dogs too! That is IAN!!!!!!


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Yesterday during free time I saw my youngest, cutest russian student holding a tube of Pringles outside the hotel.

I went up to him and said, “Hey Vlad, gimme a high five.”


After we slapped hands he looked at me for a moment and said in his heavy Russian accent, “Wood you like a chip?”

“Yeah, I would. Thanks.”

Then, as he offered the tube to me, he thought for a second more and said, “You may have five.”

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Mountain Hut

This weekend Dan, Balazs, Michael and I led a group of 31 boys on an overnight excursion high into the alps near us.  We took two buses: the second ascended a thousand meters over forty five dramatic minutes, passing one massive dam and ending at a second one.

From the dam we were surrounded by snow capped mountains with a small window down into the valley from which we’d just escaped.  One dam looked down onto the other where we could easily spy our residence for the night  – a lonely pair of buildings in a sparse landscape.  On our hike down to the hut we saw dozens of marmots  a family of alpine ibex and two golden eagles soaring close to the ground a hundred of feet above our heads.

The owner of the hut was an old cowherd who appeared on an ancient motorbike like a character out of an old Disney film wearing laderhosen, a dirty checked shit and pointy hat designed for elves.  We hung out at the hut, played games and ate Schnitzel.

The next morning was clear and cold as a bell.  We had a light breakfast and hiked back to the top to catch the bus.  The highlight of my trip was creating an ice pack for an injured camper by stuffing glacial snow into one of my socks then fixing it to him with gauze.  The little guy was alright in the end and I got to see the specks of light from other huts in the mountain night mingle with stars peeking out from behind the clouds.





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Pool Party

The morning started cloudy but as the afternoon wore on the sun came out and clouds dispersed behind the mountains.  When I was done with afternoon program I was itchy hot and dying to go to the pool where half the staff had spent the afternoon with the older campers.  The only person who was interested was Catie, our program manager, and she had to work.  

After fifteen minutes in the office she finally broke away leaving us with 40 minutes to get dressed, get to the pool and be back before dinner.  I ran up to my room drawing an entourage of campers who’ve never seen me run outside a game and calls of “Ian, what happened? What’s going on?”  “Don’t worry about it,” I responded and brushed past them.

Bang bang, I changed then ran down stairs.  I then had to find Dassie, who had the pool passes; find the passes;  get a campers full name for my boss; and provide two kids with candy they’d bought the day before.  By the time I ran out the front door I was itching with sweat.  Meg who was leading an evening program with me asked “Ian, do you know where the Scattegories materials are?”

“I’ll care about that later!” I shouted while running past her.

Catie was pulling the car around when I got to the driveway and we drove through Piesendorf with the controlled urgency of a student who’s late for class but under the eyes of the hall monitor.

When we got to the pool both of us walked quickly through the gates, down to the grass, stripped off and then dove into the deep end.  We swam across the pool, slid over the barrier into the kiddy area and went up to the water slide.  We did three quick runs down the slide.  Then spent five minutes relaxing under the mushroom fountain in the kiddy pool.  Then three more freestyle slides (racking up a personal best of seven 360’s in one run) and we were off.

We got back in time for our 6:10 meeting and I had to take my towel to dinner but I can’t imagine a better way to spend my precious free time.

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ايان means Ian in Arabic, which is a phonetic language.  You’ve gotta love working in an international environment.

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