The Aspect Of My Life

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I'm Not Ready

I relish my four days off.  I spend time with the trees, the birds and the squirrels, rarely having human conversation.  I meditate and remain as still and peaceful as possible.  I need those days to prepare me for the bedlam that awaits me come my Friday work day.

It doesn't matter whether 30 or 200 people are checking in on Friday.  I know as soon as I walk in the door I will be slammed with swirling chaos.  Part of it is because it is Friday and some of the full time staff are making sure all their work is done for the weekend.  It is a Friday frenzy so they can be worry free over the weekend.

A larger part is because there are too many people trying to work in too small a space.  The office/store is set up with two phones, two chairs and two computers.  The space behind these work stations barely allows for one person to move back and forth as needed.  When I come to work I make a third person and an hour later another employee clocks in which makes for four people.  Do the math, and there are two people with their fingers up their butts (as Jean would say).

Now, the reasoning behind the four employees at the same time, and overlapping for several hours, is that this is the busiest time of the week.  Because it is so busy, two people will be working the outside booth for check-ins and two people will be in the store answering the phones and taking care of store purchases.  This is reasonable and logical.

However, I must always remember that this is the Hood, aka the Fun House.  It is the craziest of crazy places and if people don't want to work in the booth, why then of course, don't open the booth.  To my knowledge management does not question why the booth is not open and there are two extra employees milling around the store, underfoot and idle.  It makes no sense but what it does do is add to the general air of confusion and disorganization.  The seasonal help see this happen week after week, but the full time employees rule the work place and they are the ones that say when and if this magical booth opens.  I have learned to keep my mouth shut and stay out of the way.  But that is why I know that on any given Friday, chaos will reign.

And because I know this, I rest as much as possible on my four days off.  But this week has been particularly busy.  There was the trip to Sandy on Tuesday which ate up a big chunk of the day and then Wednesday I had to deal with the multiple steps of straightening out my pay check's direct deposit.  My cell phone has died so I am dealing with getting a new battery and then there was the extra laundry since rugs needed to be washed and on and on and on.  Just one of those weeks.

I deal with whatever comes my way, nothing else to do, but I do not feel as rested as I usually do on my Thursdays.  But come tomorrow I will once again enter the bedlam. 

Oh, I am so not ready.

Places, So Many Places

I have traveled far and wide.  I have been through every State except for Alaska.  I have lived in Iowa, North Carolina, Washington, Louisiana, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Florida, Arkansas, Nebraska and Oregon.

I have traveled to Canada, Mexico, Costa Rica, England, Cornwall, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, France and Spain.  I have also lived in Greece.

I am from many places.  Where I call "home", I can't say.  As my friend Maria just emailed, I am a Woman of Many Lands.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Summer Solstice

The sun and warm weather came with the Solstice.  In celebration I drove to Sandy to replenish supplies and was treated to a glorious view of Mt. Hood.  I tend to forget that I reside just a few miles from this mountain where olympiads train because snow remains throughout the year.
Similar to my view while driving
Elsewhere, the weather ranges from fires to flooding to tornadoes.  Having lived in so many states, it hits home when I see pictures of flooded bridges in Nebraska and fires in Arizona and New Mexico.  I know those bridges, know the land that is ravaged by fires. .  I know the reactor in Fort Calhoun, NE that is now surrounded by water.  I know the infamous soda fountain in Iowa that may now be completely flooded.  I know the stadium in Omaha where a tornado forced the college world series spectators to flee as the sirens blared.  I have boated on the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers and have seen some of the dams which have now become overloaded.

I sit in awe at these extremes in weather, knowing there is more to come and wondering what shape the earth will take after this massive cleansing.

My daily concerns seem so small when viewed from such a large perspective.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Rain, Rain, Go Away

I feel like I am getting webbed feet.  The rain has been relentless and everyone is getting weary of so few dry and sunny days.  The weather says next week will be sunny and warm.

One can only hope.

Monday, June 13, 2011


This is my new neighbor, the Neff truck.

Understandably, I thought they were an ice cream truck.  But no, they sell snowboard and skateboard head wear and other paraphernalia and will be my neighbors for the next month.  My plan is to get some freebies, including ice cream, from the back of that truck.
Other than that, the work weekend was as exhausting as usual.  Friday felt like one of those days where you are spinning plates as fast as you can, and plates are constantly being added.  Made the day go by very quickly, but two more days on top of that left me feeling very drained.

The highlight was an amazing meal of stuffed grilled jalapeno peppers and a cheeseburger for my Saturday dinner.  It is always so wonderful to come to a fire, friends and good food and all I have to do is plop down and enjoy.  Thank you so much Jan and Kerri!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


A rally has come to the park.  They started pulling in on Sunday and by Tuesday, these Allegro buses filled the vast majority of the park.

Approximately 160 of these big rigs came to rally and despite the cold and rain, the energy of the park picked up considerably.  I was so glad I only worked 4 hours on Sunday as it was the busiest day I have worked this summer.  By the time I go back to work on Friday, they should mostly all be gone.

I took a tour of these Allegros which range in size from 30 to 40 feet and feel massive compared to my 25 foot Minnie.  They are gorgeous inside and out, with large bathrooms, TV screens and floor space.  They even come equipped with washers and dryers.
But, I am always happy to retreat to my beloved Minnie Winnie and the comfort I find within my smaller confines.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Week in Review

Tent Going Down
It was cold and wet Memorial weekend and I was happy to go to work on Friday.  By Saturday I was totally exhausted and could barely function.  It is always a bit tough for me to get back into those 8 hour shifts.  But I managed and at one point was pulled from the office to work in the check-in booth which was fast and furious and lots of fun.  The numbers are down this year so it actually felt much easier than last year but it may just be because I feel more comfortable with the job this year.

The park and my back yard changed dramatically while I was at work and I came home to a totally changed neighborhood.  I still did not have neighbors on my right or left, but the RVs behind me made it more of a trek to visit my weekend neighbors.  Jeff and Colleen fed me brats, corn on the cob, potato salad and beans as we all huddled under the big tent for warmth.  We were dry and Jeff had a roaring fire going at all times, but this cold weather has been very unusual. 
Even Young Ben Looks Cold

I filled up with propane when I left New Mexico on January 15th.  I did not need to fill my propane again until I arrived at the Hood on May 13th.  Now, only a few weeks later, I need propane again.  Because I can buy propane at a discount, I have been using my heater instead of the small electric heater I normally use.  It has been so cold I have run the heat more consistently than I have in over a year and a half.  Yep, it has been cold and damp.

The sun is supposed to return this weekend with temperatures possibly hitting the 80 degree mark and I am sure I won't be the only one happy to dry out and warm up.

I made a trip to Sandy, 17 miles away, on Tuesday to replenish supplies.  I had to make my move when there was a break in the rain so even though I thought later in the week would be better and give me more time to prepare, everything was accomplished within a few hours time.  Unhooked, outdoor furniture moved, inside prepared, down the road to Sandy, shop shop shop, back to the Hood, re-hook and re-situate.
After that out to dinner with co-workers as pizza and drinks were being paid for.

Wednesday rained all day so a good day to rest, read, clean the fridge and do some minor housekeeping.  I did my laundry on Monday so today my only chores are roasting up a batch of veggies and taking a shower.  And then it is back to work on Friday and a weekend that looks to be sunny and warm with not too many people checking in. 
Life is good and my new puppy, Peaches, who really isn't mine but belongs to Jeff and Colleen, will be up to visit again in a few weeks times.  Life is even better when a puppy is licking your face:).