Friday, July 3, 2015

The Holiday Begins .....

I sit here sipping coffee and await the beginning of a holiday weekend. I run through a checklist in my mind. Everything is done. Bathrooms cleaned and stocked, dumpster empty, fireworks purchased, coffee to brew, food ready to be cooked. Now all I need is campers.

The weather is predicted to be just right for a great day tomorrow. Not too hot and no rain in the forecast. Now, if the shop will just get my golf cart ready ......

Put this down to answer the phone and after a zillion snocones and more calls, I am back. It was going to be pretty boring without some really good phone calls anyway.

The phone did not disappoint me! In the midst of a marathon sno.cone event ...... involving mixing unlikely flavors together and lots of them, the phone did ring. "Ya'll got any sites tonight?" I answer in the affirmative and before he could start to ramble on, I asked if I could give him a call back after I made 4 more snocones. "Well, no, you can't call me at this number, I ain't supposed to be using my work phone....." I cut him off and told him to call back in 5 minutes. I am a fast builder of snocones.

He called back. "Now, if we stay all day tomorrow, do we have to pay?" I am confused by this question. Is he asking if he should expect to pay for the night he camps, or is he asking if I expect to be paid for a late stay. Well, here's the deal. He is local and he knows about the fireworks display, so he wants to come out today and pay for tonight, then leave after he partakes of the free meal and fireworks display. I ask him if he would expect to pay for another day if he stayed late in a hotel. This was stupid of me, since now having met the man, I am sure he has never stayed in a hotel, maybe a motel ....

I assured him that he would indeed have to pay for both nights. He showed up about 20 minutes later. Oh boy, let the fun begin. He struggled to fill out the registration and when he got to the portion that asks for the number of people he had to free his hands to count. Oddly enough, though, when I took over and asked him to give me the number of adults and the number of children under the age of 14, he only came up with a total of 5.

I could swear I saw all his fingers and thumbs at work naming people that were to join him and his "old lady". This is setting my mood for this weekend .... and not in a good way.

I have some good spies in my park and he might be leaving sooner than he thinks.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Holiday Weekends and Floods

Holiday Weekends are the bane of campgrounds everywhere. For some reason, there is always a group or individual that seems to think the holiday is an opportunity to go berserk with antics of destruction.

I never know how to prepare for that. I always start out with as much optimism as I can muster. I confess that every year it becomes harder to do. This year has been awful for camping. I was not booked solid for Memorial Day. That was good for travelers, since I could accommodate travelers.

I am not yet booked solid this weekend. Despite that, I still made 60 burger patties yesterday. 40 hotdogs of the Oscar Meyer variety are chillin' along with the burgers. Buns and condiments have been purchased, charcoal is at the ready. I bought more kites for kids to fly. Optimism.

I have a group of temporary workers here on a monthly basis. They were supposed to be finished with their job by Memorial Day. They are still here. Hasn't been a problem until now. One of the workers occupies a site that was booked last year. The nice man has agreed to pull his rig off for the weekend, since he will be going home anyway, but I will need to compensate him for his trouble.

The unrelenting rain has washed out many a weekend so far this year. The forecast promises a sunny Fourth of July. I have many a site still up for grabs and was thinking the weekend might prove to be a small, intimate affair. I could just freeze all the leftover burgers and dogs for another day.

Optimism has it's rewards, though. Remember all that rain? I am soggy, but no flooding here. Not true for all the campgrounds near rivers. They are so flooded, they have closed. Looks like I might just fill up after all.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

I Want A Puppy

So .... I was pouring the bottle of beer with the honey into the flour mixture to make bread when the phone rang. Annoyed , I had to stop what I was doing and grab the phone, but I saw my son's name on caller ID and I was no longer annoyed.

It was not my son's voice on the other end of the line, but that of his youngest daughter, Zara. Zara likes to be the spokesperson for her sisters. After lots of giggles and proclamations of her love for me, she got down to business. Seems that the girls want a dog. A puppy, to be exact. She tells me that Dad said yes, but Mom said no and they want me to intervene.

I sigh deeply and wonder how I can be diplomatic, given my belief that all children need a dog. I am also a big believer of not interfering with my grown children's decisions in child rearing. I was questioning Zara about the idea of the puppy when my cell phone rang. It was Jada face timing me. Jada was the one who instigated the call. Her Dad told her she would have to be responsible and would have to PROVE that BEFORE getting a dog......

During my interrogation of middle child, Jada, I found out that this agreement was to include cleaning out the cat litter boxes. And she promised that she had done so and had done a very good job. I explained to her that picking up dog poop is part of the deal and that puppies pee a lot. She swore to me that she was up to the task. After all, she had done such a good job with the cat litter, right?

In further questioning, I find out that the deal was just started TODAY. But, "Gramma Kathy, why don't you just get the puppy for us?" No way would I do that! I like my my relationship with my daughter-in-law too much!!! I did promise to talk to her, though.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Thirsty For Sleep

I was just finishing the last strip of mowing when the thunder started last night. We just mowed the entire park yesterday, knowing more rain was coming ..... And it did, all night long. Thunder, lightning and wind along with the rain we do not need.

It is overcast today, but not raining. I figured I could have a productive day, with just a phone to interrupt me. I tackled the stubborn vines on the fence around the pool, then decided to sweep the concrete deck and skim the pool. Along with frogs and leaves from the storm, I scooped out some candy wrappers and ......... potato chips. More chips clung to the sides of the skimmer baskets. Now, how can this be? My signs and my big mouth clearly state that FOOD IS NOT ALLOWED in the pool area. Outside the fence, there is a pavilion all set up for eating and smoking.

This turn of events did not make me happy. I don't know who did it. The candy wrappers did not match anything I sell, but I allow people to bring coolers, as long as they keep them outside the fence ..... in the shade, on the pavilion. It had to be the people I had never seen before. Ten of them. I can only hope that they return. I never miss an opportunity to educate the public.

It is drizzling now and I have decided to come in and sit a spell. It has been a hard week. I spent an entire day in misery on Tuesday. Really felt horrible, so much so that I crawled into bed at 4:00 in the afternoon and slept until 10:00 pm, got up, took my evening meds, and went right back to sleep and slept until 5:00 am. Fed the animals and went back to bed and slept two more hours.

I felt better Wednesday morning, but was ready to go back to bed at 8:00 pm. I cannot seem to sleep enough lately. I could go for a nap right now. I was thinking about it as I mopped the store floor. Thought I could just stick the "closed" sign in the door and sneak off to my bed. But, the phone rang. "Do y'all allow camping there?" Although tempted to say no, I answered in the affirmative. The questions continued, do we allow fishing, does one need a license, are campers allowed to use the  pool ........ then he asked if I had any tent sites available. I asked when a site would be needed and was told today.

It is raining. The forecast is for rain for the remainder of the day. Why would you want to pitch a tent in the rain? The grounds are soggy and I will close the pool in the event of a thunderstorm. I will also make one leave the fishing area for shelter. I hope they don't show up .....

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Helicopter Came

The excitement is over. The helicopter was here all day yesterday. I was surprised at the size ..... it was small. The ever present wind was blowing and I worried that it would be a problem.

The swimmers came out and got a show for free! After watching it hover over the tower and take down the first set of equipment, then take up the replacements, I was done. I saw that the pilot was indeed earning his money. That helicopter hovered perfectly still as the men on the tower hooked the equipment to the dangling chains.

The men, however had to watch every cycle of the process. He Who did not get a ride in the copter. The FAA came out with the crew. They did not think it was a good idea (thank goodness) and He Who was planted on the ground with all the other men watching, mouths gaping open as they watched and then turned to one another and pointed upwards to make sure they all saw it. Men, just little boys at heart.

Oddly enough, the FAA representative was of Middle Eastern descent. He even wore a turban on his head. Nice guy, though. I talked to him as he ate his lunch. Asked him why he didn't bring enough for everybody. His buddy told me I wouldn't want my tax money paying for that. Really not keen on my tax dollars feeding him! But, wait, my tax dollars are paying his salary.

Anyhoo ....... the excitement is over and we are back to normal. Still very wet here, so I will be pushing the mower in all the wetter spots. Lucky me. Just listened to the forecast and they tell me it will rain this afternoon and again on Friday. I hear the mower calling my name. With two push mowers and the big Z, we should be able to shave it down before the rain.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Hockiteller Is Coming!!

Everyone who reads this knows I have been complaining about the internet for some time. It fades out and in and I end up resetting the modem several times a day. Sometimes it works and other times ......

It is frustrating, to say the least. Especially since the tower sits right next to my property. I can see it from my front porch, I can hear the insane guys who climb it as they yell to each other. You will recall that the wind funnels through here following I-70 east to west and back again. This same wind has weakened the tower supports.

We were approached by a nice gentleman last week to see if we would allow a helicopter to land in our field and spend the day lifting new equipment to the tower top for AT&T. He Who gets excited about such things as helicopters, immediately asked if he could ride and gave his permission. This came as no surprise to me. I know the man.

All the excitement was to begin last Thursday morning at 7:30 am. He Who awoke early, giddy with excitement. He put his very best work shorts on ( the ones with the least amount of oil stains on them, the ones that have the hem intact and not raveling away from him wiping his chlorine fingers on the edge) and a work shirt with our logo on it and, like his shorts, with as few stains as possible. The rain came and came and came and no helicopter arrived. He Who was disappointed, not being allowed to ride in the copter. Me, I was hoping it would stabilize my wavering signal. Probably doesn't work that way, but hope runs deep.

They showed up Friday afternoon as campers were arriving for the weekend. Not the helicopter, mind you, but the AT&T guys with the various pieces of equipment to be assembled and lifted in the sky. Our field is very wet. Our county was under a flood warnings. There is to be no compensation for the use of our property (well, unless you count He Who being underfoot), but any damages to said property will be taken care of and we are under no liability. I would have negotiated for more, but ........

The apparatus in the field looks like some sort of deranged trampoline, causing much speculation on the part of the campers this weekend. I wouldn't be surprised if my parking lot fills with lookey-loos tomorrow as the helicopter is scheduled to arrive. I will let you know. Fingers crossed that my signal improves .........

I bought my man a brand new pair of shorts today for his big adventure! I have a memory of my son, Jeff, standing on the beach screaming "Hockiteller, hockiteller" every time he saw a helicopter in the sky. He was 2 years old, but we still call them "hockitellers". I wonder if my husband will slip up in the excitement tomorrow ..... you know I will let you know if he does!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Rain, Rain Go Away

Flood warnings in the forecast today. All week has been like this. Rained every single day. Lest you be thinking that I enjoyed some down time from swimmers .... I did not.

My favorite was a woman who inquired about a refund if it rained? Did she not see the same forecast I saw? Did she not have a smart phone in her hand to consult? Did she not see the black clouds hanging low in the sky as she arrived? She insisted that she wanted to pay for her children to swim, but wondered aloud about the chance of a refund. The chance was slim to none. She stayed all day, only leaving the pool only when the rain was heavy. I figure if you want to take your chances with the weather, you should pay for that choice.

The grass is getting out of hand. The ground is too wet to get the big mower out there, so the push mowers were put to the task during a lull in the rainfall. I continued mowing as it started to mist lightly and did not stop until it was raining pretty hard and I was drenched. People were in the pool.

The phone rings constantly. Reservations and cancellations. This morning at 7:00 the phone trilled and awoke the sleeping hounds. The howling awoke me. I had been up at 4:30 with the puppy and the cantankerous old guy (the dog, not the husband) and I was definitely not happy to leave my bed that early.

It was a cancellation. At seven o'clock in the morning. I would never call a business at that hour. I wouldn't call anybody that early. The call was not answered and a message was not left on the machine. So, you may be wondering how I knew it was cancellation ...... I checked caller ID and returned the call.

Nary a drop of caffeine in my system, as I waited to hear the voice of the person who interrupted my much needed sleep. I am not nice without coffee. You can ask my family ..... you could even ask the hounds that awakened me. He wanted to cancel his reservation. "Okay?" he said. I then told him I would need to know his name. "Oh", says the early riser, like I was invading his privacy. I had my reservation book staring me in my blurry eyed face. He provided this secret information and I looked at my book for his name and not finding it, I told him it was taken care of.

Imagine his surprise when he finds a charge on his credit card account from whatever campground he had reservations with. Told you I was not nice when you wake me up.