Stanley gets off the bus at Camp Green Lake. He's thirsty and hot, and the camp is a barren wasteland, with only some old buildings, tents, and a couple of trees. Ick.
The guard takes Stanley into an air-conditioned building, where there is a man with his feet up on a desk drinking soda and eating sunflower seeds out of a burlap sack. Now that's an image. The man, who wears a cowboy hat and has a rattlesnake tattoo, says his name is Mr. Sir. He also says he's been eating sunflower seeds since he quit smoking.
"You're not in the Girl Scouts anymore," Mr. Sir tells Stanley (4.19).
Stanley is given two (identical) sets of clothes, one for work and one for rest. Each set of clothes consists of a bright orange jumpsuit, a shirt, and a cap. He's also given white sneakers and an empty plastic canteen. This sure doesn't sound like the camp Shmoop went to as a kid.
Laundry, Mr. Sir tells him, will be done every three days, at which point Stanley will get a new set of rest clothes, and his old rest clothes will become his work clothes.
Mr. Sir also tells him that he will be expected to dig a five-foot deep, five-foot wide hole every day, and that breakfast is at 4:30 in the morning: they start early so they can be finished digging before the sun gets too high.
Next, Mr. Sir takes Stanley back outside and tells him to look around. He points out that there is no fence, no guard tower – nothing to keep Stanley from running away. Oh, but there's also no water for a hundred miles.
So yeah, if Stanley tries to run away, he'll be "buzzard food in three days" (4.43). Our not-so-lovable Sir tells Stanley to get used to being thirsty: he's going to feel that way for the next eighteen months.