Cheley has been the single most important force in my life up to this point. Its power over people has proven to be palpable. And I did not just type that sentence for the alliteration; the people that allow Cheley to become a profound and important aspect of their being reap almost unlimited benefits, ranging from things as simple as coming to appreciate warm water while showering, to developing the most intense and significant bonds of brotherhood and sisterhood that one can make in a lifetime. Its beauty, both physical and beyond, is sublime and profound. With the obvious exception of campers growing up and growing out of their camper years at camp, Cheley has remained almost completely unchanged since I first breathed its air and felt its quiet allure in July 2007.
Cheley is a constant, a shield, a blessing, a powerful force, an enigma, and so much more. It’s hard for me to describe what I really feel inside of myself about it to people who haven’t experienced it, partially because of their own lack of experience, but also because I still don’t fully know the extent of what it means to me or what lessons it has taught me. One thing I know for sure is that my years with Cheley have instilled in me a sense of adventure, an undying bold spirit that finds pleasure in pushing my own boundaries.
The Cheley Experience transcends time and place, as the people I have met and encountered there have shown me that no matter how much time we spend away from one another, we will always return to each other. And even if we don’t as soon as we would hope or like, we carry each other and our experiences within ourselves, and for that I will always, always be grateful.
Sam Faktorow is a Senior at Colorado College with a double major in English Literature and Drama and will be a Sports Counselor in Haiyaha this summer.