While I was teaching, I lived in a constant state of having lost my voice. My western medicine guess is that it was from talking loudly all day, trying to make my voice cover the whole auditorium and to talk over the students who were involved in their own little side conversations. My eastern guess is that there were lots of things I was preventing myself from saying, and therefore my throat grew weary from trying to hold back. What I definitely know is that it made singing really hurt. I couldn't get any high notes out. I started singing lower and lower and even then I could only be relied on to sing for the first 15 minutes or so. At the end of my second year teaching I missed performing, so I did the musical Pippin, and refused to speak more than I absolutely had to in school, which meant compromising my teaching, but hey.
So when I signed up to do my first Village Harmony camp, it was not as my regular self, a confidant singer who loved nothing more than some really great harmonizing with people whose voices blended well with mine. It was as a scared, embarassed person who wasn't sure if I could make more than a few off-key squeaks.
The summer came, and I stopped teaching to an auditorium full of young people. I rested my voice. And today, the third day of VH camp, I still haven't lost my voice. My throat is tired, and that makes sense: it's like using a muscle that is weak and not used to the work. But still: I feel happy. The altos have a shitload of great parts. There are really good singers here. I love the songs that the leaders picked. This is how I remember singing to be. Hell yeah.
Oh, also: I bought a new digital camera. It's tiny and feels like it could be crushed without much effort, but it's shiny. And consumer reports gave it a top billing. Best thing: now I can take pictures without borrowing Kenny's camera, which is appropriate since I'm going to Vietnam first. Check out my first round of shots: