Crabbe's escape to the great outdoors becomes a valuable learning experience. Not only does he acquire the strategies and the skills necessary for survival in the bush,but also he gains understanding of himself and knowledge about life.
During Crabbe's stay in the wilderness with Mary he learns many strategies and skills necessary for survival in the bush. Crabbe learns how to cook for himself, and be edible, build a fire in rain or dry weather, and how to read a map and compass. He also knows how to get along without Mary. Here is a quote from Crabbe: "I grabbed a little self-respect. I was in good shape for the first time ever. I could walk at a good pace all day through the bush. Better still, I got so I actually thought I could survive in the bush without Mary." Mary also taught him how to think for himself and not let his parents treat him like a kid and to tell them that he needs to pick his own school and friends.
While Crabbe is with Mary, he also learns many lessons about life and gains a better understanding about himself. Crabbe learns that if he is going to live out in the wilderness he needs to know about packing and how he is going to get food. The only way Crabbe and Mary can get food is to steel it from the hunt camp. Since no one is supposed to be at the hunt camp Mary thought it would be easy. Boy, was she wrong. "Mary stopped just before we broke free of the trees. She pointed across the kidney-shaped lake. And there on the far shore, on a small promontory of maybe two acres was a group of long buildings huddled in the trees. Smoke was coming from one of the chimneys."
Crabbe's main teacher is Mary, but there are other people whom he meets on his journey who teaches him about maturing and being an adult. One person that Crabbe meets on his journey is a guy named Jack Johnson. When Crabbe meets him, Jack looked at Crabbe's hands and had rushed him to a clinic. Another person Crabbe meets is a doctor named Dr. Buster. She told Crabbe...
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