Thursday, February 15, 2007

A Better Day Next Thursday III

The work camper couple next to us left on Saturday, for a place up by Waco. We hope they will find what they are looking for, mostly more money but also a little more administrative sanity. A new couple turned up on the Thursday before that. I gave her the tour, and Don gave him the tour. Friday, when we went to town, he had to dig up and repair a water leak. Some of the water lines are done with gray plastic electrical pipe, and I don’t think it mates well with regular plastic plumbing. Leaks occur pretty regularly, and this one had the fountain coming right out of the electrical panel. Then on Sat, she was using the rather dispiriting ladies room and the door to the loo fell off the wall, wrong screws in the hinge, and hit her in the mouth. So along with being too far from shopping and etc so they are gone too. Today is Wed, and a new work camper, a lone guy has turned up. We shall see what he knows how to do and how he will react to the disjointed reality around here.

A woman moved into Cabin 12, who has no car. I think she was living with her daughter and son in law. She had a phone line put in and walks her cat on a string. She seems nice, and has long hair, which is probably grayer than it looks. Mr. Creased Pants has been visiting her and she has visited him in his trailer. We were all waiting for some sort of explosion of jealousy from the Eye Lady, like the one that scared another hapless lady back into her cabin. If there was an explosion, we didn’t hear it, alas, and the Eye Lady is pretty tight with Mr. Creased Pants.

The exotic dancer in the big “Lodge” has had a boyfriend right along. One night the Eye Lady, ever looking for trouble called the police on him, in vain. It turns out he is on parole for something called attempted intention to enter to commit burglary, I actually saw a wanted hand out on him. Sounds like he didn’t do much, he is a shy kid. We did have three cruisers here last week, but he apparently ran off into the woods. I think they are both hiding out somewhere, the dogs are gone. She did ask me to call her if a package from Victoria’s Secret came, said they were slippers. Right.

The past and much missed manager has taken his trailer and gone to another campground to be the manager there. We have three cabins unrented, and none have been cleaned since the last guest. I started to but he said they weren’t that dirty. I have been working on the cabins with Don, putting up insulation and nailing up siding. We are dragging our feet about the sheetrock work that will be next.

Yesterday we had a glorious sunny day, in the 70’s, working out in the sun, I even got a teeny bit of sunburn. Today we are back in the 50’s and it is cloudy. Rotten luck that we had to chose the coldest winter in decades. Green grass is appearing in places, but the days are too short yet for any hint of spring.

People continue to stop in, saying they had talked to the Owner, and then they want to know where is the river? And the boat ramp? He actually asked me why people keep leaving. When I pointed out that saying we are on the Guadeloupe River is a stretch, implying he owns the county boat ramp which is ¼ mile away, and promising people work that isn’t here might have something to do with it. He temporized and played word games to try to justify his pitch. He must have read some book on salesmanship that encouraged him to paint a rosy and inaccurate picture. I also pointed out to him some of the trashier visuals, namely his trailer and the junk around it. Unkind of me perhaps, but he did ask. He went so far as to move the dumpster salvage kid bikes to where they are the first thing you see, not the second.

We had one very odd shopping adventure in San Marcos. It is a high end outlet mall, with store for every thing from Polo to DKNY to Crate and Barrel (where we went ) and tons of other pricey stores. The odd thing was that the whole complex mimicked a piazza in Italy, complete with campanile, gothic work over the windows, striped “marble” . Nothing quite worked its way up to being an actual cathedral, it was more all the other buildings around it. and even a dog boned shaped lagoon that in nicer weather provides a very short Gondola ride as in Venice. Very disconcerting, as it was all very clean and newly painted, no patina, no history , and was not quite full size. And of course there were no Italians, no cafes, no tiny EU cars, only chilly Texans hurrying from bargain to bargain. It seemed to me that if I had take pictures of this themed shopping destination and compared it with some of my photos from Italy, that I might almost have identified the buildings they were knocking off. I didn’t find that the prices were all that terrific either.

We are nearing the end of being an off base “home” for the grandson, he is doing his practical testing now. He tells of being in a dark tent with gunfire, shouting sergeants, and “blood” covered victims on whom he must do a rough diagnosis of wounds and take appropriate steps. Sounds dreadful, but I think he rather enjoys it. He will be graduating on Feb 27th, and then will either go to GA or to Italy for the next part which is called Airborne and involves learning to jump out of airplanes. He is looking forward to this with much glee. It’s not clear how much longer he will be here after the 27th, and we are beginning to get very itchy feet to be on the road. We are also tired of working construction all day everyday. Well Don is, I have been slacking a bit.

The latest work camper says he knows electrics, but he connected the white wire to the hot side of the circuit breakers and the black wire and the ground to the neutral strip. He connected the white wires of all the circuits to the output side of the circuit breakers. When Don said that was wrong, he said that was how they did it in IL. Since there was no green wire he used the black as his neutral. For those of you out of the loop in this wire stuff, what he did is pretty dangerous. This was in a cabin under construction. He has also been working on the RV pedestals, and we keep testing ours so that we don’t turn the trailer into a giant toaster..

We went to Austin to do some geocaching, and to do a little touring. It was a grim and chilly day, so we did not see the parks that lie along the river through the city, but did our caches in the southern end and just drove through the down town area. Our first cache was in the parking lot of an upscale shopping district with a Whole Foods clone market. We went in and shopped for some expensive stuff for a Valentines Day dinner, and stayed for lunch at the café. It has been a long time since I was in store like this, with 5 different kinds of smoked salmon, every cheese known to man, pate, all kinds of fresh fish, and granolas and health food stuff that you can get by the pound. After shopping at Wallmart and watching my pennies, it was kind of a shock. I like really good food, but it seems to me that stores like this promise health and happiness through food that is hugely overpriced, expensively presented and marketed to those who can just afford to be seen here. I do believe that our food is too full of additives, toxins, hormones and etc, but it annoys me that this healthier food is out of the financial reach of most people. The ironic thing is that this Central Market is actually an HEB, the big Texas food chain started by Howard E. Butt’s mother in nearby Kerrville, TX. The floor plan of the store was too intricate for me, I nearly didn’t find the Meat Dept. The store is in a newish large open span building, so I guess the floor plan was designed to look as thought the store just sort of grew through several storefronts. It occurred to me that in the event of a fire, it would be difficult to get everyone out, but in Texas, even more than in NH, live free or die I guess.

It is 28 degrees here this morning.