Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck met at camp when they were kids. Both ladies remember Camp Mueller fondly and especially swimming in the pool at the camp. Brenda and Leslie talk about how the camp counselors had "Indian" names. The two ladies also recount the various activities campers did at the camp, including riding on the camp's mule.


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Matthews, Brenda (interviewee); Witbeck, Leslie (interviewee)


Tebeau, Mark (interviewer)


Phillis Wheatley Association



Document Type

Oral History


38 minutes


Mark Tebeau [00:00:00] Who is, will be asking you to sign at the end of our interview. Just that we can use this and put it in the archive.

Leslie Witbeck [00:00:06] Okay.

Mark Tebeau [00:00:07] And I'm going to arrange this so that if we're all a little closer together and I can hear the both of you just fine.

Brenda Matthews [00:00:14] Wonderful.

Mark Tebeau [00:00:16] So please introduce yourself.

Leslie Witbeck [00:00:19] Leslie Witbeck.

Brenda Matthews [00:00:21] And Brenda Matthews.

Mark Tebeau [00:00:23] Well, thank you for interviewing with us today. So we're here to talk about Camp Mueller. And my first question, I'm going to ask is, when were you ladies born? If you don't mind telling us.

Brenda Matthews [00:00:37] Oh, the year?

Mark Tebeau [00:00:37] The year. Yes, and where?

Brenda Matthews [00:00:41] Brenda Matthews. I was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1947.

Leslie Witbeck [00:00:48] Leslie Witbeck and I was born in 1946.

Mark Tebeau [00:00:52] And what neighborhoods do you, did you grow up in?

Brenda Matthews [00:00:59] I was in the... [An unidentified person gives Matthews a glass of water, which she acknolwedges.] Thank you. I would say the Quincy-Fairhill neighborhood at the time. Fairfax Recreation Center was near my home, and I went to Quincy Elementary.

Leslie Witbeck [00:01:19] Well, I grew up in the Glenville area and then moved to Lee-Harvard area. And I went to Miles Standish, which is now what, Michael R. White?

Brenda Matthews [00:01:32] I believe you're right.

Leslie Witbeck [00:01:33] Yeah.

Mark Tebeau [00:01:34] So how did you first hear growing up about this camp?

Brenda Matthews [00:01:40] Well, one of my girlfriends attended it.

Unidentified persons [00:01:43] Took a long. Pull it up. He said he can pull it up. I pushed it down. Pull it up. Pull it up?

Leslie Witbeck [00:01:51] One of my girlfriends went to Camp Mueller. So her father and mother told my mother and I ended up going.

Mark Tebeau [00:02:01] And what, did you have any expectations when you started? What did you think was going to happen to Camp Mueller?

Leslie Witbeck [00:02:08] I was going to play, run. Get wild. Things that I couldn't do at home.

Mark Tebeau [00:02:19] Okay, and what about you? How did you hear about Camp Mueller?

Brenda Matthews [00:02:22] I was going to day camp at the Phillis Wheatley at first, at six and seven. And from that point, my mother heard about overnight summer camp for two weeks sessions. And that's how I started. Information that my mother received at day camp.

Mark Tebeau [00:02:40] And what did you expect?

Brenda Matthews [00:02:42] Swimming was what I was interested in at that time. I was already taking lessons, but I wanted to learn to be a better swimmer. And I, for some reason, maybe for movies, I felt that I would learn, learn better at camp.

Mark Tebeau [00:02:58] Now, now, ladies, we were, we were taking a stroll around the grounds a few minutes ago, and I began to wonder did you two know each other at camp?

Leslie Witbeck [00:03:07] Oh, yes.

Brenda Matthews [00:03:08] Yes, yes.

Mark Tebeau [00:03:10] So now you're a year apart. How did you meet each other at camp?

Brenda Matthews [00:03:15] Well, you know, we're, we're really not a year. I was born in January of '47 and for that.

Leslie Witbeck [00:03:22] And I was October '46.

Brenda Matthews [00:03:24] So that's really three or four months difference. So we were in the same.

Leslie Witbeck [00:03:29] Unit.

Brenda Matthews [00:03:30] Unit, cabins, and tents at the time.

Mark Tebeau [00:03:34] Wow. So, what are your, how did you meet? Do you remember your first time you met?

Brenda Matthews [00:03:38] I can't, Leslie. We was young.

Leslie Witbeck [00:03:39] I can't either.

Brenda Matthews [00:03:41] Oh, no.

Leslie Witbeck [00:03:42] That's too long ago. You're talking over 50 years. But.

Mark Tebeau [00:03:49] So take me back to the swimming experience.

Brenda Matthews [00:03:54] The counselors were mostly college students and we went swimming every day and had lessons, and it was wonderful. Our counselors were patient and, and taught us different techniques and the dead man's float, in the back, float the butterfly. And it was just awesome. The counselors were just great at the time. They all had Indian names. I wish I could remember most of the names I believe. Ms. Leslie can. She's better at that than me.

Leslie Witbeck [00:04:24] I remember some of the names. One of the swimming instructors was named Anna Kiki. And she was, I'll never forget, Newport News, Virginia is where she was from. And an excellent swimmer. And she's the one who made me want to be the first black Esther Williams.

Brenda Matthews [00:04:41] Okay.

Leslie Witbeck [00:04:43] Do you know who that is?

Mark Tebeau [00:04:44] I don't, tell me.

Leslie Witbeck [00:04:45] Well, Esther Williams was in movies and she did water ballets, synchronized swimming, and she was in quite a few movies. And I wanted to swim like her.

Mark Tebeau [00:05:00] And were you able to swim like her after camp?

Leslie Witbeck [00:05:02] Yes. I even got my junior lifeguard certificate here at Camp Mueller and I went on from there.

Mark Tebeau [00:05:11] Now, do you think it's possible the two of you became friends because of swimming?

Brenda Matthews [00:05:18] No.

Leslie Witbeck [00:05:18] There was so many other things that we were doing.

Brenda Matthews [00:05:18] Oh, so many activities, yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:05:20] That we interacted with each other. You know, so.

Brenda Matthews [00:05:24] Right at breakfast, the breakfast here was very warm, very family.

Leslie Witbeck [00:05:30] Family- oriented.

Brenda Matthews [00:05:31] Oriented. And it was still the same stage. And so you became friends, right at your, your meal, mealtime, whether you were younger or older. Because we all ate together. It was just so warm. It really was.

Mark Tebeau [00:05:44] So tell me about that breakfast. What did they serve you for breakfast?

Brenda Matthews [00:05:50] Hot oatmeal. We truly had.

Leslie Witbeck [00:05:52] Sometimes we'd have oatmeal. Some mornings, cream of wheat.

Brenda Matthews [00:05:54] Some mornings it would be cold cereal. But we always had toast and jelly or apple butter?

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:00] Apple butter. I, I really feel.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:02] Yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:02] It was homemade.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:03] Yeah.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:03] The apple butter was absolutely delicious.

Mark Tebeau [00:06:05] Had you ever had apple butter before?

Brenda Matthews [00:06:07] Yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:08] For me, here was my first experience camp, as far as, apple butter. That's my first introduction was here.

Mark Tebeau [00:06:16] I love apple butter.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:20] Me too.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:20] Yes.

Mark Tebeau [00:06:20] What about lunch and dinner? What do you remember what foods you had for lunch and dinner?

Brenda Matthews [00:06:24] Do you remember, Leslie?

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:25] Oh, no. But it would be a usual lunch, you know, well-balanced.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:29] Great real mashed potatoes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:32] Yes.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:34] And butter and milk. Real not instant. Everything at actually was, was fresh.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:40] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:41] As far as our meals, but no your mashed potatoes and your chicken. And I'm trying to think of the different meals we would have at all our different.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:48] Meatloaf.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:50] Meatloaf.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:51] Corn.

Brenda Matthews [00:06:51] Yeah, but they were all well-balanced meals.

Leslie Witbeck [00:06:56] True. And we get fruit twice a day every day.

Mark Tebeau [00:06:59] Now was that something you didn't have much of at home?

Leslie Witbeck [00:07:02] Well, we had fruit.

Brenda Matthews [00:07:02] Good fruit.

Leslie Witbeck [00:07:03] It was something that you automatically got here, whereas at home I might see it and walk past it. This time, you know, it was right there. So you ate it.

Brenda Matthews [00:07:14] Peeled and sliced or whatever. Fixed in a salad, which made it more appealing all the time.

Mark Tebeau [00:07:22] Now, tell me about those cabins that you stayed in. Were they, were they cabins or tents?

Brenda Matthews [00:07:28] Both.

Leslie Witbeck [00:07:29] Well, the younger kids stayed in cabins, which is what we started out in. And the bunks would be lined up and there would be counselors at either end.

Brenda Matthews [00:07:44] Inside plumbing.

Leslie Witbeck [00:07:47] But we couldn't wait to get to the tents. Then we had an outhouse.

Mark Tebeau [00:07:52] How'd you feel about the outhouse?

Leslie Witbeck [00:07:54] Well, late at night and you had to go. You might get halfway to it, but you'd change your mind quick or you'd get your buddy to go with you. It wasn't anything you wanted to do on your own.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:11] Well, by the time you got to tents, you should be used to spiders.

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:16] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:16] Frogs.

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:17] Snakes.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:19] Occasional snake or two. So but it was, the big girl to be in a tent that meant she was a big girl now.

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:25] That's right.

Mark Tebeau [00:08:25] Now, do you ever remember a time going to the outhouse and seeing a snake or a frog in there?

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:30] No.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:31] Spiders maybe. Not the snake in the outhouse.

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:35] Not snakes.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:35] The, the spiders.

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:37] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:08:37] Daddy long legs.

Mark Tebeau [00:08:38] So how many years did you go to this [inaudible]?

Brenda Matthews [00:08:43] Maybe six.

Mark Tebeau [00:08:44] And what about you Ms. Leslie?

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:44] About the same.

Mark Tebeau [00:08:46] So what, so what were the other differences between camp and when you were just starting out Were you, that first time, were you, were you scared? Were you a little homesick?

Leslie Witbeck [00:08:58] No, because I already knew one person that was going. So, it was fine with me.

Mark Tebeau [00:09:05] Who did you know that was going?

Leslie Witbeck [00:09:06] My girlfriend. She had been the summer before. And next summer, I went. And so I wasn't afraid that. I'm an only child, so I had no problems going anyway. All you had to say, let's and my bag is packed.

Brenda Matthews [00:09:24] Same with me. I'm an only child so traveling prior to coming to camp, I was doing that and exposed to different activities because of being an only child. So my parents went oh, let's get her here and let's do this. So. And to do sort of a variety of things since I didn't have someone to play with.

Mark Tebeau [00:09:44] So now, I understand you sang songs here at camp?

Brenda Matthews [00:09:48] Yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:09:51] Yes. That's a song.

Mark Tebeau [00:09:55] Now I asked you before, could you remember one of those songs? Maybe two of them for me.

Leslie Witbeck [00:09:58] Wait a minute can we get the Camp Mueller song together? Let's see. I can only do two verses.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:01] Camp Mueller campers. Camp Mueller campers.

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:04] Are you ready?

Brenda Matthews [00:10:06] Why not?

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:08] I may bail out on you, though. Cause I can't get it together.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:10] See that's not right.

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:12] I know. I'm not a bit funny. It would be because I can't. Are you ready?

Brenda Matthews [00:10:16] Yeah, let's do it.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:10:16] Camp Mueller campers are the campers that are really cool. Camp Mueller!

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:24] Camp Mueller campers are the campers.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:10:26] That are really cool. Camp Mueller!

Brenda Matthews [00:10:30] Mueller, how we love your name.

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:33] All right.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:33] And we hope to bring you fame.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:10:37] Camp Mueller campers are the campers that are really cool. Camp Mueller!

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:42] All right.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:43] We're campers. We're.

Leslie Witbeck [00:10:45] Oh, my goodness.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:46] Do your best.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:10:50] Dance and sing.

Brenda Matthews [00:10:52] You're better than.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:10:54] The rest. La, le. La, le. La, le. La, le. La. Camp Mueller! La, le. La, le. La, le. La, le. La. Camp Mueller!

Brenda Matthews [00:11:07] Mueller how we love your name and we hope to bring you.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:11:16] Thank. Camp Mueller campers are the campers that are really gone. Camp Mueller!

Leslie Witbeck [00:11:21] Wasn't that wonderful?

Mark Tebeau [00:11:22] All right. Come on boys. Now that was fantastic.

Leslie Witbeck [00:11:32] Yes.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:32] I'm impressed that you could remember that. Oh, wow. You have a beautiful voice.

Brenda Matthews [00:11:34] Thank you.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:35] Now, ladies, you asked me a question. As we were walking over here, you wondered if the activities were the same. And I'm curious if these young gentlemen who have been to Camp Mueller. Do you think they know any camp songs?

Brenda Matthews [00:11:45] I believe they should.

Leslie Witbeck [00:11:49] You should.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:49] Do you all know any camp songs?

Jimmy [00:11:51] I am the only one who went to camp here.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:53] And do you know any camp songs?

Brenda Matthews [00:11:54] Yes, you do.

Leslie Witbeck [00:11:54] Yes, you do.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:54] You weren't singing any camp songs?

Jimmy [00:11:54] Nope.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:54] No campfire songs?

Brenda Matthews [00:11:54] You've got to be kidding me?

Jimmy [00:11:56] No. I'm, I'm serious, we didn't do any campfire songs.

Brenda Matthews [00:11:56] Oh, okay.

Mark Tebeau [00:11:58] Oh, now I'm really disappointed. I was hoping you'd sing for us.

Jimmy [00:12:03] We didn't do any. I mean, we just sat by the fire.

Mark Tebeau [00:12:08] Sat by the fire?

Jimmy [00:12:08] We never did anything.

Mark Tebeau [00:12:11] So, boys, I have some more questions I'm going to ask the ladies, but I'm wondering if you each have any questions about their experience that you wanted to ask? Lucky and then Jamar.

Lucky [00:12:20] Was there any pranks that you all did?

Brenda Matthews [00:12:24] What was that again?

Lucky [00:12:25] Was there any pranks that you all did?

Brenda Matthews [00:12:27] I did. I. Again, I said we had a moonlight swim and that was really, really big because the girls and boys would swim together. And, you know, we're teenage, we're 12 and 13 now. And that was a big deal. But I collected a jar full of daddy long leg spiders all throughout the today, and that evening I let them loose in the tent. Everyone was scream and hollering but myself. So that was a give away that I was the...

Leslie Witbeck [00:12:56] Culprit.

Mark Tebeau [00:12:58] Leslie, do you remember this?

Brenda Matthews [00:12:58] And my, I couldn't go on the moonlight swim and to me, that was very important. But yeah, that was my prank.

Mark Tebeau [00:13:05] And that was your punishment?

Brenda Matthews [00:13:06] Yes, it was. Yes, it was. But I had fun.

Mark Tebeau [00:13:12] Was it funny?

Brenda Matthews [00:13:16] Well, it depends on whether a spider crawled across your face or not. If one crawled across your face, it wasn't funny.

Jamar [00:13:27] I have a question. Was there any light in the tent? Whatsoever, any lights?

Leslie Witbeck [00:13:31] Flashlights.

Jamar [00:13:36] What about out in the outhouse?

Leslie Witbeck [00:13:38] Flashlights.

Brenda Matthews [00:13:36] No, flashlights. I mean, we really was.

Leslie Witbeck [00:13:38] We camped.

Brenda Matthews [00:13:38] We camped. We camped. Yes. It's true. So true. We did have to walk with the flashlights every where we went once the evening came.

Leslie Witbeck [00:13:46] That's true.

Mark Tebeau [00:13:48] How dark did it seem that first few years or so, that first time you went?

Brenda Matthews [00:13:53] Well.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:13:54] It was dark.

Leslie Witbeck [00:13:55] It was dark, but for some reason the moon and the sun and the moon excuse me, and the stars was really it was bright. It came out you'd be able to see once your eyes would get adjusted. You can, you see shadows. You can move around.

Mark Tebeau [00:14:15] Do you have a question?

Unknown camper 1 [00:14:16] Yeah, I do. What kind of art activities did you do?

Brenda Matthews [00:14:19] Oh, the craft that we, the grading of the keychain.

Leslie Witbeck [00:14:23] Oh, yeah. Lanyards.

Brenda Matthews [00:14:25] Yeah.

Leslie Witbeck [00:14:25] We'd make.

Brenda Matthews [00:14:27] The plastic streamers. Make the key, keychains that go around your neck on your arm.

Leslie Witbeck [00:14:32] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:14:32] That was.

Leslie Witbeck [00:14:33] We made earrings for our mothers. We worked with clay.

Brenda Matthews [00:14:38] That clay. Yes. Table plates, making the plates and painting. Yeah. So, that was.

Leslie Witbeck [00:14:46] Placemats.

Brenda Matthews [00:14:48] Scavenger hunts was fun. Yeah, that was really, really fun. I enjoyed it. That's where they gave us a list of things to bring back and we'd get a little prize and they will call for the swimming instructor's hair and a certain flower. And it would be things that we would have to go all over the campground to get.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:08] To find, yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:09] Different type of stones because they've taught us about the different leaves and stones and, and to collect and bring them back. That was fun. I enjoyed that.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:17] That was fun.

Mark Tebeau [00:15:18] This swim instructor's hair.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:19] Astrad.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:21] Astrad.

Mark Tebeau [00:15:21] Which swim instructor do you remember?

Brenda Matthews [00:15:23] Oh, he was so fine.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:27] I can't remember his name but he was very good looking. Very good looking. And in retrospect, very nice body too.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:36] Of course, we're, you know, 13 and 14 by this time and we didn't look at it that way.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:43] Yeah.

Mark Tebeau [00:15:44] You had a question, sir?

Unknown camper 2 [00:15:45] Yeah. Did you guys go on any nighttime classes?

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:49] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:49] Well, we the field, where we were heading, we spent a night in in the sleeping bags.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:55] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:55] All night.

Leslie Witbeck [00:15:58] We'd have the campfire.

Brenda Matthews [00:15:59] We'd have the campfire, sleep on the ground, and the sleeping bags, and listen to what we thought sounded like coyotes and owls and everything else.

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:09] We'd tell ghost stories.

Brenda Matthews [00:16:10] Yes. Counselors were very good at telling the stories, and.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:13] The counselors were good at telling stories?

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:16:15] Yes.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:16] Tell us. Just one second. Could one of you guys go close that door real quick? We're getting a lot of noise from it. Thanks Jimmy.

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:23] That's the bingo players.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:25] And the longer they play, the louder they get.

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:28] They get.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:29] So tell me, what's the. Tell me a ghost story.

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:33] Oh, I don't know remember.

Brenda Matthews [00:16:34] I don't remember either. Oh, there were plenty of them and the crazy hunter and all that kind of stuff. But no, I'm sorry. I wish I could remember some of them.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:45] Ms. Witbeck. I'm sorry, before when you were telling us about the female counselor you remembered, there was some noise in the background. Could you tell us her name again and what?

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:53] Anna Kiki. She was our swimming instructor.

Mark Tebeau [00:16:56] And what do you remember about her?

Leslie Witbeck [00:16:58] Well.

Brenda Matthews [00:16:59] She was attractive, I'll say.

Leslie Witbeck [00:17:00] Very, very. She was from Virginia, and she is the one who was responsible for me getting my junior lifeguard certificate. And I went on from that night. She started me doing water ballets, the synchronized swimming. And I wanted to be the first black Esther Williams.

Mark Tebeau [00:17:21] Now, did you do the water ballet with her?

Brenda Matthews [00:17:24] No, I didn't. No, I didn't.

Mark Tebeau [00:17:25] So. Tell us about water ballet.

Leslie Witbeck [00:17:28] Oh, that's where you more or less put on a show, a dance-like in the water. You do surface dives and when you go down, you can spin and you see your feet going all the way down.

Mark Tebeau [00:17:41] Now, could you do this show for someone at the end of camp?

Leslie Witbeck [00:17:44] It would be for the campers, yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:17:47] Shows for each other. We entertained each other.

Leslie Witbeck [00:17:49] Yeah.

Mark Tebeau [00:17:49] Oh, really? So tell me about that. Was there something at the end of camp or was it ongoing?

Brenda Matthews [00:17:55] Ongoing.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:17:55] We'd play in the talent shows.

Brenda Matthews [00:17:58] The younger kids may learn little things. And we'd come to dinner one day and after dinner we'd put on a little show.

Unknown person [00:18:04] Is this the restroom here?

Mark Tebeau [00:18:08] It is.

Brenda Matthews [00:18:08] It's one of them, yes.

Unknown person [00:18:08] Oh, okay. thank you.

Brenda Matthews [00:18:10] Also with the older kids singing and.

Leslie Witbeck [00:18:13] Dancing.

Brenda Matthews [00:18:13] Dancing routines.

Leslie Witbeck [00:18:15] Skits.

Mark Tebeau [00:18:16] Now, you, you said the camp counselors had Indian names.

Brenda Matthews [00:18:21] Yes, they did.

Mark Tebeau [00:18:22] Do you remember those Indian names? Even if you don't remember the counselors' names?

Brenda Matthews [00:18:25] There was White Cloud.

Leslie Witbeck [00:18:27] Minnehaha.

Brenda Matthews [00:18:29] Hiawatha was the cook. There was Little Beaver. Those are the ones I remember.

Leslie Witbeck [00:18:37] And you are doing better than I

Brenda Matthews [00:18:44] Yes.

Mark Tebeau [00:18:44] So one of the things where I'm going to ask you, we're we're. I'm going to ask the boys to ask you a question here in a few more minutes. But I have a couple other questions that I'm supposed to ask. One is about the neighborhoods you grew up in, and I don't recall exactly what you answered. How was camp different from the neighborhood and the community you grew up in? You know, so that's.

Brenda Matthews [00:19:09] Oh, for me completely. I'm in inner city.

Mark Tebeau [00:19:12] Okay.

Brenda Matthews [00:19:12] I mean, truly inner city, so.

Mark Tebeau [00:19:14] So, [where did you] grow up then?

Brenda Matthews [00:19:15] I grew up in a Quincy. And for the ones who may know Quincy Central neighborhood, Fairfax Recreation Center is a popular center. So someone here and that would have an idea of the location. But I'm strictly inner city. I went to the recreation centers in the neighborhood. But as far as the camp atmosphere, no.

Mark Tebeau [00:19:37] So what was different?

Brenda Matthews [00:19:39] The air. Trees. Well, as far as the frogs, and the snakes, and the spiders. All of it. Yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:19:50] Nature.

Brenda Matthews [00:19:51] Nature itself.

Mark Tebeau [00:19:52] So nature, was that what you, was different. Now, where did you grow up, Ms. Witbeck?

Leslie Witbeck [00:19:55] Glenville area. And we had a pool that was accessible. Yeah. I mean, right here at our disposal. And like I said, nature because you didn't get the trees. And you didn't go for hikes in the city. And you rode your bicycle or you walked. Well, there weren't any bikes out here. So we walked.

Brenda Matthews and Leslie Witbeck [00:20:24] Everywhere.

Brenda Matthews [00:20:25] Yes.

Leslie Witbeck [00:20:26] Just being outdoors. We didn't have to worry about traffic, getting hit by a car, or anything. And we we're just free-like.

Mark Tebeau [00:20:34] Wild even.

Leslie Witbeck [00:20:37] Yeah.

Brenda Matthews [00:20:38] Yes. Yeah.

Mark Tebeau [00:20:43] What, would did, did, is there anything you didn't like about camp?

Leslie Witbeck [00:20:48] The outhouse.

Brenda Matthews [00:20:50] I was going to say that would be for me also. The outhouse.

Mark Tebeau [00:20:52] Did it smell bad?

Leslie Witbeck [00:20:53] Yes.

Brenda Matthews [00:20:55] And it was always cold water.

Leslie Witbeck [00:20:56] That too.


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