By Yehuda “No ‘H'” Fenton
This has been an incredible 24 hours here at BMD! Beginning right after breakfast, we rushed off to the buses for an amazing trip. Ahead of us lay skating, bonfires and a bivouac. Just further proof of how unmitigatedly awesome BMD is.
After an exciting bus ride, we arrived at an incredible ice-skating rink. We had just enough time to stop for lunch and then we hit the ice. Gliding along on professional figure skating skates, the bochurim careened around corners at breakneck speeds, skidding to a halt with perfect hockey stops. They skated to chassidishe music, some of the campers playing with a hockey puck, others merely weaving around the other skaters. It was a wonderful beginning to the bivouac.
We then headed over to the camp grounds. After Mincha, BMD was split into two camps and the collection of wood began. Traversing the forest, the campers returned with twigs, brush, and branches and piles of wood quickly accumulated. After the obligatory tree was brought to the campsite, construction of the bonfire began. Teams of staff worked tirelessly until both campsites had massive pyres built.
Before the fires could be lit, the bochurim were led to an exquisite barbeque, with hotdogs and chicken cutlets. After the meal was done, we all headed back to the campsite to daven maariv. Once we davened it was time to light the bonfires.
Although we can’t confirm whether or not the fires were lit with a single match or not, we can guarantee that within minutes two enormous conflagrations lit the night sky. With the roaring fires ablaze (and all the campers at a safe distance) everyone sat back to roast marshmallows, sing niggunim, and listen to stories of the Baal Shem Tov late into the night.
The next morning we awoke to mikva in a nearby river, an inspiring shachris under the open sky, and a lavish breakfast to rejuvenate from the trip. After breakfast, it was time to head back, ready for more phenomenal times at BMD.