The Mandala Blog: Assateague Island

After graduation, my friends and I took a quick camping trip to Assateague Island. Afterward, I had the chance to guest write about the experience for the Mandala Blog. If you’re interested, take a look:


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One of the first things I did when I graduated college was hit the beach. And not just any beach: Empty stretches of sand and a rising sun over the ocean’s horizon, where you’re isolated alone on an island seemingly in the middle of nowhere—and are those wild horses?

Assateague Island, a 48,000 acre vacation oasis, is shared between Virginia and Maryland, and is relatively untouched by human civilization. The secluded nature and wild island horses feels like a scene straight from your collection of Walter Farley Black Stallion books you had as a kid.

To Read More, Click Here To Visit the Mandala Blog.

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Let Your Fire Die

As a post-college graduation indulgence, and as a way to prove to nature that we were competent adults worthy to take on the world, I and two of my friends from high school ventured through the countries of Maryland to Assateague Island National Seashore.

Only Veronica had been camping before, but while she supplied the tent, cooking utensils, lantern, and fire starters, even she admitted to Rebecca and I that she’d never camped at Assateague before and that she was more familiar with camping in the woods than by the ocean.

But not to fear; we were college graduates. We were adults.

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The Harvey Underground Church (Personal Narrative)

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This was a personal narrative for my college creative writing course. I wanted to describe the several nights my cousins, brothers, and I played an intense game of “Underground Church” in my grandma’s yard in Harvey, North Dakota.


Lights in the dark void hovered five feet off the ground, rotating in long, haphazard arcs like small, drunken lighthouses that sliced the night as a sharp blade. One of the lights haunted an old shed, the holder of the flashlight tromping around and pivoting his weight, as if he had nothing better to do than to stand alone in the sea of darkness.

Our soft thuds of sneakered feet were too quiet to alert our hunters. We weaved in and out of trees, our powers of invisibility only compromised when we broke into an occasional pool of house lights. Dark paths, hidden holes, and dangerous strung clotheslines were determined to slow us down, yet we pushed on in a subdued rush.

As my cousins and I tore blindly through the darkness, we knew we were in huge
trouble—bigger than we ever had been before. What awaited if the searchlights caught us in its glaring eye was only up to the imagination: imprisonment, insults, possibly torture.

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Journey (Short Film)

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Aunt Cheryl Dyck asked us cousins to do a sort of talent show for Grandma Dyck’s birthday (#HarveysGotTalent#HarveyIdol). Since neither Caleb, Connor, or I have any clue as to how to make banging on a piano sound good, we decided to go with one of our more familiar skills: movie making.

Journey is the most plotted film since Kingdom’s Edge, and is filmed in over four state and national parks, including the Dakota Badlands and Mount Rushmore.

Filmed on location at Fairfax, Virginia, Minot, North Dakota, South Dakota Badlands, North Dakota Badlands, Mount Rushmore, Harvey, North Dakota, and Custer State Park, South Dakota.