Thursday, June 16, 2016

My Summer Destination

Well, it's been a very busy 4 weeks.  I thought I'd have a few days to settle in and explore the area, but nope, I started working the very next day after I arrived and have been going full-tilt ever since.   But first let me catch you up on the last leg of my journey getting here.  Time warping back again about 4 1/2 weeks:

After leaving Baker City, OR area (I have to go back there and really check out the town, it looks like a very interesting place), I headed into SE Washington to the warmest place I could find at that time.  Colder, wetter weather was moving in for OR and WA.  Rain was pretty much going to be everywhere, so I wanted to be sure I was at least someplace warm while it was precipitating.  I headed to Windust, WA along the Snake River just below the Lower Monumental Dam for a couple of days of hanging out - once again without any cell service.  That's where I discovered the second flat tire I mentioned before.
Tug and barge going down the Snake River
After leaving Windust and holding my breath that the "Fix-a-Flat" and aired up tire would hold until I got to a sizeable town that had a place to look at it, I made it to Moses Lake where the wonderful guys a Les Schwab not only looked at it, but cleaned it out and plugged it for me and sent me on my way just before they closed for the day.  I was so grateful for their help.  From there I then headed towards Quincy, WA to camp for the night.  I found a great place called Quincy Lakes just north of George, Washington and south of Quincy.  It was a rough road at first going in, but once I got back in about 2 miles, it was great.  Kind of high desert meets wetlands.
Quincy Lakes
The next morning, not too long after passing through Quincy, the landscape changed drastically as I passed vineyards and green meadows as I approached and passed through Wenatchee, WA.  As I travel back and forth across this country, I find it absolutely amazing how quickly and dramatically the landscape can change.  Within less than an hour I went from sagebrush and desert-like landscape to this:
Eastern edge of the Cascade Range
It was gorgeous driving up into those mountains.  I kept wondering where in the midst of them I would be for the summer.  It was fun trying to guess.  Of course, I was way off on my estimates.  I had called my bosses from Wenatchee to let them know where I was and estimated time of arrival later that day and was to meet them at a point along the way so they could take me the last miles to their campground and get me settled in to my temporary campsite.  They took me for a drive out to my campground to show me where it was and what it looked like.  I always try hard not to imagine what something will be like before I get to see it or experience it, because it is almost never what you picture.  Sometimes you are disappointed and sometimes you are pleasantly surprised.  I like to shoot for the latter.  When we got to the campground, it was beautiful, but I was surprised by how steep it was.  It literally was on the edge of the mountain.  I knew it was along the lake shore, but hard as I tried not to imagine it, I did have it in my mind that it would be flatter and the paths down to the campsites were short and not too far or steep.  Well, some were that way, but most weren't.  It didn't detract from the beauty of the place, just something I had to readjust my mind to.  Now that I've been working out there for a while, I have gotten used to it and know which trails down I like to try and avoid!
View from my campground to the glacier and snow covered peaks across the lake.

Having had the BIG holiday camping weekend looming ahead of me the next week, I had lots of work to do to get my campground ready for the onslaught of campers.  Campsites to rake, tables to scrub, firepits to shovel out, toilets to clean, brush to cut back, plus learn how to do all the paperwork and money handling operations as well.  Lots to keep me very busy, but I got some helpers.
This is Gus.  My new BBF.
I love him because he is short like me and I can reach everything in his truck bed!
This is Cyndi.  (If you grew up in the 80's you'll get her name!)
Gus and Cyndi have been big helpers in accomplishing all my job duties.  Couldn't do what I do without them!  I love old beater trucks - they are so much fun.  Gus takes good care of me on my rough, pot-holey road and is happy to carry all my supplies and waits patiently for me to finish my tasks.  He grumbles sometimes, but he still carries on.

A week ago today, I finally got to move into my summer campsite.  YAY!!!  It is nice to finally be in my spot.  Of course, it was just in time for the busy weekend, so I haven't had the chance to get settled in yet.  And with the exception of 2 weekends ago, it has been pretty darn cold here.  Are you at all surprised to hear that?  I just don't know what I ever did to offend the Weather Goddess so much.  Being on the south side of a glacier and snow melt fed lake (read that as DAMN COLD water) with the wind coming down those same glacier and snow covered mountains, that cold wind comes across the cold water smack in to the campground.  I have been freezing my butt off again.  On the bright side, the wind and cold temps have helped keep the mosquitoes population down a bit.  Though they will be out in force again as soon as it warms up - and they are merciless.  I blew it on getting a screened house at a great price.  There was one on sale back in Ohio before I left, but I didn't get it because I didn't know if it would fit in my campsite and I was hesitant to spend the money before my trip, just in case I had problems along the way (like 2 flat tires!).  So now I know I will definitely need one and am on the hunt for one I can afford before the "blood-sucking air force" retaliates against the cold.

The scariest thing I have encountered so far.
I hate clowns of any kind.  They creep me out.
(Sorry to any of you who are clowns.  Nothing personal to you, just one of my phobias)

Aside from the wind and cold, the two downsides to my summer campsite is that I don't have sun in my campsite to charge up my solar system, and I don't have any internet and only very sporadic cell service.  Hopefully I will be getting some portable solar panels along with a booster and antennae soon to help with those issues.  Thus the huge delay in getting this post posted.  I tried to finish it at the other campground I was at, where I had good internet connectivity and sun exposure, but then I ran out of data.  So, I had to wait for that to reset and am now sitting in the local library again using their wifi and charging my computer.  Always something isn't it.

I am enjoying my job.  I like the physical activity of it, the good feeling of keeping my campground clean for my guests, assisting them with any of their needs, and meeting the people who come there (well, most of them).  But I really like Sundays, after most people leave and I can just focus on cleaning the campsites.  I get to enjoy the beauty around me and the quietness of nature at peace.  Very Zen-like.  Though I'm still waiting for a bear to visit!  That's my summer dream!

(I hope I will get internet at my campsite soon so I can keep up better with you all.  There are so many things I want to tell you about, but they slip away when so much time passes before I can get internet access to post it or get my battery recharged.  I will try to do better!!)