Get Your Shit Together: A Peak Inside Johnston Retreat
Large herds of Johnston Buffalo travelled into the San Bernardino National Forest on Saturday for a community retreat. Each year, Johnston holds a large-scale community meeting called Get Your Shit Together (GYST). As this retreat is private amongst Johnston students and retreat attendees, the following photo series serves as a peak from the outside in.
Camp La Verne provided cabins and a camping ground for the Buffalo to rest. In true Johnston fashion, some students even choose to sleep outside in hammocks or on the ground.
Fall was in the air: a surprisingly exciting change. Temperature ranged from high 60s to low 40s compared to Redlands’ summer-like weather.
We buffa-roamed the large expanse of forest by participating in hikes, interpersonal groups and choice exploring.
One of the most popular destinations is a lake located nearby. To reach the lake, we could walk the road or take a beautiful and vague path through the forest (Foreshadowing moment).
Some people hiked around the lake, walked on a log in the water, and worshiped quality time on the fishing pier. “Who said college students need to grow up,” said Emily Kilroy, Johnston Freshman, as she chased other students around.
As time passed by, we decided to go back to camp. Kilroy and I made the naïve decision to take the scenic trail…It turned out that we did not pay as much attention as we thought on the way to the lake. We quickly became lost on a dirt trail that was more confusing and less prominent the further we walked.
Don’t you worry! Our heroic Community Assistant (CA) quickly came to the rescue. Although, I do think that Kilroy’s plan, leaving rock monuments to remember where we had been, was a real winner. Not to fret, we hiked back to camp, successfully escaping all the mean bears that only existed in our head.
The rest of the trip was spent arguing out small details for a big plan while cuddling up to one another angrily (This really happened. Did I mention it was cold?). This was my first experience and I must say that a 7-hour community meeting was not my favorite part, however, we did get our shit together. We united for a common cause and the Johnston community is stronger because of it.