About Us

Chris and Dennis are traveling around the country seeing the sights and occasionally volunteering at select locations. We avoid the interstate as much as we can and tend to stop for squirrels and shiny objects.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Confessions of a Park Host

Our time at Sunset Bay State Park and our first gig as the Park Host is sadly concluding at the end of this week. A few months ago I posted about the time paradox thing where time seems to be a super sonic jet or a ruptured duck and November has been breaking the sound barrier daily.
Sunrise at Sunset Bay State Park
The one constant here is just how enjoyable our stay has been. I asked Chris if she had any regrets or any negatives about the job and she responded with a resounding No!. On reflection she did admit she regretted the job was only one month long and the negatives were parting company with our new friends. To be truthful, I have the same feelings. Here are our reasons:

  1. None of the work was onerous nor difficult. Let's face it, you volunteer for the job to sell firewood, clean fire rings and answer campers' questions. In return the state gives you a premium site to park in with all utilities, more than adequate time off and the bonus: lots of gas powered toys er, tools, to play, er, work with. The capper is they give you a vest and hat to wear AND a neat (read that fast!) golf cart to drive around in. The kid in me is still giggling and I can't wait to go back to work each day.
  1. Our co-workers: Mike and Carol and Mike and Terri (yea, it was a bit confusing at times). Both couples have way more experience than we did. I'm not quite sure they realize just how much information and wisdom they passed along to us newbees nor how much we really appreciated what gems they were.
  2. Stephanie, our pet ranger (just kidding, she was our boss and the volunteer coordinator for the park). Made the job fun and funny. She and the other rangers trusted us to do our jobs and while they had a lot on their own plates, they were always there to ensure we had what we needed.

Notice how I haven't mentioned the scenery or the stuff to do? There was plenty of it but it is really the people you meet and work with who make the difference. The walks on the beach were just icing on the cake.

Seems I'm forgetting something – Oh yea, our wonderfully entertaining campers! If you look back on our previous blog posts I believe I've mentioned some of the shows we've seen when campers show up at a park and when they leave. As the hosts we had front row seats and I believe the only time the show slowed down was between midnight and 7am.

Did you know, if a soccer ball is kicked into a neighboring campfire it will send up sparks that twinkle in the dusk light? Even more so when the ball blows up. I'm not quite sure the screams were all in delight of the sparkly exhibition.

Throwing crab shells into your campfire is perhaps not a really good idea – especially when you have a window open in your rig – and the smoke is blowing in that direction. Another not so good idea is to dump water on the fire to stop the smoke blowing in. Did you know steam from a dampened fire behaves just like the smoke did and burnt crustacean shells really do smell worse when combined with steam?

Did you know firewood tends to not burn well if left out in the rain. Sorry, no refunds for faulty firewood.

Leaving your chips, cookies, snacks or for that matter any food out on a table or leaving your cooler top unfastened is really an open invitation for the campground raccoons. No, the park host is not responsible for lost food items or disturbed camp sites and no, we can not prosecute or arrest a raccoon. (To the one visitor from back east: No, we REALLY do not simply let the critters out of cages for the campers' benefit. They REALLY are wild and run free).

This final week was also Thanksgiving. Chris and I want to voice our thanks for just being able to do this thing called RV'ing. A special thanks for my sister and brother-in-law who drove 10 hours to spend Thanksgiving day with us and who got to share a bit of the entertainment.


Safe travels; we'll see you at our next stop: Cape Blanco.