Thursday, August 30, 2018

Labor Day

Labor Day camping is upon us. They will start arriving today. I am sitting here enjoying the quiet. Some campers plan to stay until next Wednesday.

I may have mentioned a time or two that I am not a fan of holiday weekends. My regular campers I am always happy to see. It is the new ones that frighten me. You can't see what you are getting when you take a reservation. You don't know what is coming into your park until they enter the office to check in.

Case in point: a nice older couple stayed here for two weeks. They assured me that they had "plenty of money" to pay the bill. They left without paying. A friend of theirs called to offer his credit card info to make sure they could stay. But, he wanted to save me the transaction fee and assured me the day they left that he would put a check in the mail that very day. That was Sunday. Today is Thursday and guess what I did not get in the mail.

I called him to let him know I would be charging his credit card and he begged me to wait an extra day because it is the fault of the post office. There was a shooting incident in his town and he is sure that is why the mail is slow. Unique excuse!

Back to the weekend and all the preparations. I am ready, having made my third (I hope last) reservation chart. Some people are coming tonight, most people will be arriving tomorrow and some will be here Saturday. Some will be leaving on Sunday and most will be leaving on Monday. A few will be here until Wednesday. Problems always arrive with those double sites. I have to make sure that the campers leaving on Sunday are not blocked in with a camper in front of them. I am pretty sure I have it just right, but just one camper deciding to take a site not assigned to them throws a monkey wrench into my life! And there is always at least one.

Such is life. It is quiet now and I will sit here and enjoy it!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

I Have Always Wanted A Wife!

I feel like I am drowning in peaches. My one little tree produces massive quantities. I really thought I had lost my harvest when they were still tiny yellow hard knots on the tree in July. I have usually harvested and distributed them the week of the 4th. So, imaging my surprise when they started to grow and change color just last week.

So many peaches hung on the branches, they were touching the ground. I put all manner of braces under the tree to hold the branches high enough to mow and keep them from breaking. I lost three good size limbs that broke from the weight of the fruit. When they begin to ripen, it happens fast and I employed every available receptacle to hold peaches. Soda crates, milk crates, cardboard boxes and bowls and buckets. HeWho loves to run endless errands took a pile and distributed them to various places like the bank and the tow office and just people he met along the way.

I made people take them when they checked in or came to swim and still I peeled and cut up enough to freeze for pies and cobblers. Made the mistake of giving a cobbler to Kevin (aka my wife) and now he thinks I should make another.

In  case you are wondering why Kevin would be known as my wife …….. Being a wife is hard work, as those of you who are wives know. Wives get to pick up the debris left in the wake of husbands and children. I have always wanted a wife. Someone to do my bidding without being asked threatened. I like to weed gardens, everyone here knows that. I am not a neat weeder like Andrea with her gloves, digging tools and bucket. I am a spontaneous weeder. If I see a weed I itch to pull it up, sometimes I will pause as I mow to grab a weed or two and toss them in the path of the mower. But, mostly I make little piles of weeds everywhere. I get interrupted frequently and will forget they are there. I do pick them up when I remember …… mostly, sort of.

When Kevin came to live here he wanted to work in return for his rent. A lot of campers do that, but only a few will make me happy with the results of their efforts. I have yet to find anyone under the age of 50 who really knows how to work. When I noticed that Kevin had been consistently picking up my weed piles, I knew he was a keeper! Doesn't bother HeWho complains about my weeding ways at all. He is quite happy for me to have a wife, since I still pick up after him.

But, I still have peaches falling from the tree. I love grabbing a peach and eating it as I go about my business in the morning. Bad thing about this late harvest is that the apples are coming in right on top of the peaches. Beware, if you come here, you will leave with peaches, apples or tomatoes!

Friday, August 24, 2018

Always The Phone

I seem to be having technical difficulties. Sometimes I can log on just fine, then, when I really want to log on ….. I can't. It is definitely on my end. Not my laptop, but my provider. Sprint needs to visit the tower again. 

You would think that the injured finger would be slowing down HeWho manages to get into trouble. Despite my warnings about mowing and jostling the broken finger, he still mowed the entire park yesterday. The new billboard was awaiting installation and thanks to Kevin and Craig climbing the ladders and putting it up. HeWho was so salivating to get up there and help, but was ordered to stay down.

I would post a picture, but it might take 30 minutes to download and I am a busy woman! Labor Day is just around the corner and there is much to be done. I mowed all day yesterday. Gathered peaches and trimmed the tree back Monday, then devoted all my time and energy to the garden next to the exit drive on Tuesday.

The exit drive garden is a bone of contention. We have a huge area to make wide turns, but people will turn sharp and make the driveway with their vehicle …….. but pull their camper over the boulders (put there to protect the garden) and through the garden. I thought about putting a sign up, imploring drivers to swing out and make a wide turn. Given the fact that most of my signs are ignored, instead I dug up and moved the boulders and added nearly 6 feet to the driveway. I imagine there will still be tire tracks in my garden, but maybe not so many.

I dug up all my bulbs that had been scraped away and buried under a boulder when someone managed to drag it along with them. I used a hand truck to move the really heavy ones and some I just rolled end over end until I got them in place. All the weeds have been removed and the bulbs reset, but my little garden cries out for color. Mums might be coming in the very near future.

After moving all the rocks and digging my shoulders and neck are still hurting! But it does look good out there.

Things seem to have slowed down enough to catch a breath. The cool weather and school have been keeping swimmers away and I have more time to get things done …… except for the phone. When you turn 65, all manner of health care providers begin stalking you. Along with those people longing to help me with my student loans. I have tried blocking the calls, but they just use a different number. Waiting for the prompt to tell you which number to push to be eliminated from the call list doesn't help either.

Don't they realize I get enough calls without them! A man called this morning to "check on" his reservation for Labor Day. The reservation was made last night and it was still right there where I penciled it in!

Monday, August 20, 2018

Giving Me The Finger

I have been uninspired of late. Not to worry, plenty of blog fodder still comes my way. My last commenter seemed to think I was waxing political and has decided to never read my blog again. Those of you who know me, no doubt knew that I was merely pointing out that someone who happened to disagree with my opinion decided to go on Facebook and say things about my park that were untrue. She was the one who kept pushing me to give my opinion. I had no intention of talking to a customer about politics. 

This is not an apology for my beliefs. I always own what I say and if an apology was called for, it would be forthcoming. Life just keeps going and we are busier than ever. This morning I actually slept until 10:00! I deserved it after the weekend I had.

I got up at 5:30 am, which seems to be the designated time for my little dogs to pee. It rained last night and I loathed the idea of getting my toes wet, since I had every intention of crawling back under the covers. Since my daughter's dog died earlier this summer from eating a rabbit she caught, I have been super diligent about walking through my back yard to make sure Martha, the boy cat has not left any "gifts". 

Martha just stares at me like he is trying to hypnotize me when I try to scold him for the carcasses he leaves in his wake. I have been tossing rabbits, birds and mice over the fence all summer. I always hope they will be found by someone else, but I am the one to dispose of them later in the day. This morning I paid for my negligence. As I stood at the door waiting for the little stinkers to come back in, I noticed that Cujo was reluctant to come to me and would not turn around to look at me. He is usually very obedient, but he knows how I feel about eating carcasses.

Charming Eddie scooted through the door, ready to go back to bed, so, leaving the door behind me open I tip-toed over to Cujo and saw the tail and two tiny mouse feet hanging from his mouth. "SPIT IT OUT!" He knew he was in trouble and chose to run from me and into the house and to the side of my bed. While I was very happy that he could not jump up into my bed with his short legs, I was still not happy that he was going to eat a mouse. I picked him up, intending to take him back outside and shake the rat from his mouth.

He SWALLOWED IT WHOLE, me gagging all the while. I shamed him and then denied him access to the bed. The rest of us went back to sleep.

Why did I need the extra sleep? Well, like I told the man admitting HeWho does things to scare me to the emergency room when he inquired why we were there ….. my husband is an idiot. Why? Because he gets these genius ideas and when he tries to implement them, he usually sustains an injury. It is like being married to a geriatric McGyver. 

This particular incident involved a 12 volt fan salvaged from a radiator out of a wrecked car. He installed solar panels on the roof of the bath house this spring. The batteries for said panels are housed in the "hallway" between the men's and women's sides of the building. This also allows access to the plumbing and holds the water heater. Along with all manner of stuff that may one day be useful. Like his beloved barn, aka Fred Sanford's Emporium, I do not enter this area. It is poorly lit, damp and creepy.

He had an idea to use this fan to keep the batteries from over heating. Keeping in mind that I have never seen the apparatus he constructed, I am pretty sure I can tell you what happened. I picture this to have lots of different colored wires and a roll or two of electrical tape, maybe some gorilla tape, as well. He is a big fan of gorilla tape. The fan itself has no safety cage covering the blades.

I am sure he had his drill close by and no safety goggles. He does not believe in safety goggles. He doesn't always turn the power off when installing things, either and is frequently shocked. No big surprise, right? He wired up his fan and found the blades to be turning in the wrong direction. Now, he had partially screwed this fan in place. Why would you secure it before you know if it works? For safety purposes? He pulled the wires apart and rewired it and it began turning in the desired direction with great force. So much force that it pulled those screws right out of the wood and was headed to his head. He said his head, but I picture his upturned face, since I am pretty sure he was looking at it. As it fell he raised his left hand to deflect it and it pretty much mangled his left pinkie finger.

I was in the office where I am held captive on weekends. I was pondering when to start popping corn for family movie night and doing a mental head count to know how much to pop. He was on the other side of the park, right across the road from one of our work campers. We ALL have cell phones, but instead of calling or texting me or Kevin, he got into his truck and drove up to the office. You will recall that he never simply walks anywhere.

I saw him pull up close to the door, right where I asked him NOT to park because the sun hits the chrome and bounces back into my eyes. He came through the door with his hand clutched to his chest. His face was ashen, he was sweating profusely and hyperventilating. I did not notice the bloody rag on his hand, I thought he was having a heart attack, taking a few years off my life. He said "I think it took my finger off." That's when I saw the bloody rag and peeled it away. His finger was still attached, but not a lot of tissue was left. I could see bone.

I called for help so I could drive him to a hospital. Kevin was the first to respond and I handed him the store keys and told him where to put the pending reservations and just wing it if any non-reservations showed up. By this time, the immediate pain had subsided and HeWho scares me was looking much better. As I was pulling out, a friend was pulling in. Terry and Sharon took him to the nearest ER for me and I checked in my campers and Kevin took over the movie screen set-up.

This turned out to be a bad idea. The closest ER is 20 miles away and not at all equipped to handle a big emergency. This was not a big emergency, I knew they would X-ray and clean up his wounds, maybe try to suture it closed, bandage it and give him enough pain meds for the weekend and refer him to a hand surgeon. But it would seem that competent ER doctors are rare in these parts. The "doctor" on duty was afraid to do any suturing, despite the fact that he called University Hospital in Columbia and was instructed to do just what I thought would be done. Instead, he just had the nurse apply a pressure bandage and give him the x-rays and tell him he needed to see a hand surgeon immediately. Oh, he also gave him a Percocet for pain.

So, off we went to another city to a hospital that I only had a vague idea of it's location …… in the dark. I have night blindness, but I got us there. He wanted to drive, of course and would have driven a lot faster than I did. We crawled into bed around 2 am after a nurse practitioner did what the doctor should have done and we see the hand surgeon later this week. 

Now he sits in his recliner, hand in the air in a Percocet haze waiting for me to fix his bandage. Looks like he is trying to give me the finger and doesn't know which one to use!