At the end of the 2001 annual meeting, then-FOHI president Art Borror was ready to gavel the meeting adjourned when Jean Fisher, a work/studier from Lebanon, Pennsylvania, asked to have the floor. What follows here are Jean’s thoughts on her first FOHI Work/Study experience.
I am here representing the entire group of participants in the 2001 Friends of Hog Island Work/Study Week. This was the first session of this program, and thus we are the first alumni, so to speak.
We suddenly realize that we are mentally and emotionally invested in Hog Island in ways we never dreamed possible.
Most of us are alumni of past study programs here on Hog Island, but a few of us are new to Audubon camp experience. All of us have come to appreciate the beauty of the Maine coast and the uniqueness of the Hog Island camp.
As the week is ending and we prepare to return to our homes far and near, we suddenly realize that we are mentally and emotionally invested in Hog Island in ways we never dreamed possible. We, each in his or her time, will remember sighting a new bird, hearing an animal or bird call for the first time, facing a new physical challenge, and feeling the sheer pleasure of a new experience, meeting new friends, eating outstanding food, and accomplishing tasks, often as a team member, that benefited the camp. In months to come, we will think of the jobs we did and wonder, “How is that flower bed developing, how is the paint job holding up, didn’t I learn this technique in the kitchen of Hog Island, or gee, if I had just had this tool I could have done such and such!”
We will remember staff members and how each earnestly and enthusiastically gave of him or herself in sharing their knowledge and love of nature. We will also remember the thanks given to us by staff and Friends association members for the work we were able to do towards the maintenance of the camp.
It is through these work projects that we are particularly invested in Hog Island, its development and future success in its mission. In addition, this first group of Friends of Hog Island Work/Study session would like to donate the sum of $150 towards this mission.