Friday, November 18, 2011

Thanksgiving Surprise

I loved your comments on Retail Mania (yesterday's blog). Thanks!  The same article is now on associated content on yahoo.  Yippie doodle!

Also, a big thanks for explaining Black Friday to me, if I had thought about it, or done a teeny bit of research, I would have realized the answer. For the mom and pop stores, I can believe that Black Friday is the first day of their profits, but for the mega corporations, I hardly think so. Of course the corporations often overpay the CEO's where as mom and pop stores, usually can't overpay themselves so lavishly. So the bottom line is often subjective. 

In spite of my scrooge bah-humbug attitude towards Black Friday absurdities, I did decide to buy turkey and fixings today for Thanksgiving. 

I will cook for the workampers.  I have so much to be thankful for this past year, so I want to celebrate and be very thankful. Since the other workampers have been so wonderful to me, I decided it would be a nice thing to do all around. I just pray that Thanksgiving afternoon is warmish, so we can dine outdoors under my gazebo.  Gazebo is my fancy name for my hexagon shaped canopy. I had mentioned this a while back, that I wanted to do Thanksgiving dinner, if all would attend. At the time, everyone seemed happy about this. 

The problem with living, working, playing in RV's, is that the entertaining can be VERY cozy when one is foolish enough to volunteer to do Thanksgiving dinner for a group. Nobody really has an RV here large enough to seat us all at a table indoors in lazy Thanksgiving comfort. So al fresco it is!  We can build a fire or drag out an electric heater, if the weather is coolish or a fan if it's fantastically hot. 

The hunter's station came with an old mobile home trailer. It has a full sized stove and oven in it. I checked it out and it seemed to work fine. I will cook the 14 pound turkey in that oven, but none of us really care to dine in there at all. It's just too depressing.   Sure there is a table and chairs, but something is seriously lacking in the ambiance department. 

Today I drove to the Kenansville, Florida post office. I had sold something I needed to ship off. Before I went on my month long trip in October, I had begun selling off a few things to raise money. I thought I had sold it all, but oops, there was one final item that finally sold and needed to be shipped. 

For three days I've had montezuma's revenge or something similar. Yuck. My neighbor's offered to give me a ride to the post office in their pickup, but I didn't think I could make it there *ahem* gracefully. One nice thing about not having a car and being forced to drive the wheel estate when I need to run an errand, is that I travel with my own restroom. In this unfortunate case, this came in rather handy indeed. 

I put away anything that might fall or break, unhooked the umbilical cords, used the restroom, then drove 7 miles in my old motorhome to the tiny post office.  After parking more or less legally, I used the private restroom again, then went inside.  The postmistress was very friendly.  I apologized for arriving a bit disorganized. She told me to take all the time I needed, and just let the line in back wait. 

Of course there was no one in line at all.  I explained to her, that I had arrived here a few weeks ago, but just recently located my mail box.  It was over a half mile from my driveway on another road. 

She laughed and said "Yep, that's the way we do things around here!  Glad you found your mail box.  Some folks are still looking for theirs..."

Here I am, out in the boonies. B is where I found my mailbox on another road, a half mile away.  A is where I live. See the houses?  Oh you don't?  Well there aren't any out here. That might be why you don't see them. I guess I am lucky the post office is willing to bring the mail out within a half mile. 

I noticed when I left, that what others had rumored about was true, the tiny post office closed up at 1pm every day. In the outer lobby where usually America's most wanted are posted, were the usual suspects plus an extra bulletin board. It was a community board full of interesting notices. 

So I read about free kittens, land for sale, a house for rent (minimum 3 months rent, on the water too), a lady looking to be a personal caretaker, who would take a live-in live-out job, a crooked photocopy of a news article about how the residents of Kenansville fought to keep their tiny post office open and won. I was having fun taking in the local news but, on line two of that article,  my restroom was calling me to hurry back and visit. As I turned to race out the door, I saw the postmistress watching me. I must have looked like I had fire ants in my pants, the way I raced outside so fast, leaping inside my motor coach. 

Now she probably thinks I am a fruit cake too. One minute I was leisurely chatting with her, organizing my box, bubble wrap, contents,  address, the next I bolt out the door racing for my motorhome as if my very life depended on it.

I am sure my rapid departure, gave her pause for the cause, because obviously I did not drive off right away. Oh well, nothing like being the latest gossip in a sleepy little town. 

Speaking of fire ants... on my first or second workamper shift I was seriously attacked by Fire ants. That is my how my swollen misshapen ankle looks over 10 days later. All those welts are from the fire ants.  If you like to look at yucky stuff, you can click on the picture to enlarge it. Oh the hazards of living around wildlife, wondering around in the dark minus a flashlight. I learned my lesson. Tsk tsk tsk!  Now I walk on three foot stilts at night.  Make those ants work to reach me next time!

Harley dog was ecstatic to see me, as a I flew through the side door of the motorhome, leaped down the hall, threw open the bathroom door and sat down. Whew!  Made it!  He dutifully raced down the hall with me as if I were introducing a new game of play. 

I was going to visit Heartbreak Hotel, for pictures,  yes the famous one that inspired the song and movie. It's supposed to be not far from the Kenansville post office. But I now felt so lousy, I headed back to the hunting compound instead. 

Ten minutes later, we whizzed right past our mailbox and missed the turnoff to go plop back down on our plot. I was feeling much better, so I decided I should go  grab the provisions for Thanksgiving. The closest grocery store was only 28 miles on down the road.  Yes,   I am in the serious boonies!  

My schedule was going to be hectic between now and turkey day, so I suddenly realized, this might be my best time to do the shopping. I had already invited the other workampers before I had all these weird problems, so now I had to plan for the party or cancel it. Since I have lots to be thankful for, I decided to plow ahead.  It's good for the soul to stay very busy.  If I had to pull over a few times to visit the restroom, I just would. One of the benefits of traveling in a motor coach. 

I put  this baby on cruise control, then sped down the country road, sipping cold green tea I had brewed earlier, thinking what a marvelous day it turned out to be. Harley was even excited, he was standing up with his paws all over the passenger window, watching the scenery sail past. Through a miracle we made it to the grocery store with no pit stops. But as soon as I parked, well I made a bolt for my restroom in back again.  

I washed my hands and face, straightened up my hair, put on some lipstick, fortified myself with a little bit of apple juice, told Harley to stay as I stuck my I'm-serious-pointy-finger at him, then climbed backwards out of my motorhome. Harley already looked a tad crestfallen. He had surveyed the parking lot, realizing this was not a campground nor a dog park nor a friend's house. Just another boring parking lot for him to wait in his rolling dog house while I got to do all the fun stuff. 

My entry steps are put away for travel. They are manual, not electric, not the automatic types, that simply popout when you need them and pop away when you don't. So when I use the side door, with the steps put away, I go out backwards, as it's much easier for me to maneuver, with my old right leg and left knee injuries.  I'm not sure how to explain why it's easier to go out backwards in this case, but it is, so I do. This too must make for  curious idle chat around the water cooler. The woman who steps backwards out of her motorhome...

Gosh, I guess my body is pretty banged up overall, but I've put it to heavy duty use over the years. It's like an old beat-up car. Been in a few fender benders, stuff breaks, things fall off, the mechanic removes obsolete parts, but it still runs and goes. That surely describes me!  

In the grocery store, everyone was just so super nice to me. I don't know what I did to deserve such wonderful service. As I came in the door a young man came over all smiling, asking me if I would like a shopping cart. I did. He wanted to know if I wanted a big cart or a small buggy. I wanted small. While perusing the cheese, a lady came up to inquire if I needed help. WOW.  This was an ordinary grocery store with extraordinary people working there. I felt like I met half the staff while I wandered aimlessly around the perimeter of the store's interior assembling fresh ingredients.  Of course I am a slow shopper at times. No need to stress out, if I can avoid it. Maybe they just aren't used to such slow shoppers as myself, taking a long time to spend a little. But how delightful to meet such a gracious staff while I sorted out the best bargains for assembling Thanksgiving. 

When I came out of the store, I drove away. I felt pretty good.  I think that dreadful montezuma's revenge has run its course. 

Back on the compound, I parked my rig, trying to face west, so the side with the most windows is facing south. I plugged in the lifelines.  Back in the RV, I  stuffed the big frozen bird in  a canvas tote, then walked Harley to the mobile home, to store the young fowl in the refrigerator  for thawing.  At  14 pounds, that turkey surely will not fit in my motorhome refrigerator.   Next, I saw the other  workampers, who had not seen the big turkey. They said they had been thinking, what with all my maladies of late, we would cancel Thanksgiving, so I wouldn't have to cook. 

I was delighted to inform them, we would not be canceling at all, I had just bought Turkey and all the fixings.  I had also channeled with my crystal ball to request a pleasant afternoon, so we could dine al fresco under the gazebo. 

Now it was their turn to change glum faces to excited ones!   Of course they said stuff like "You don't have to do that..."  but I could tell they were plenty happy that we would be celebrating and thanking and eating and yacking away between mouthfuls of home cooked, made from scratch good old fashioned Thanksgiving foods. 

I wrote all this last night when I couldn't sleep, but I am so glad to report that after trying out various home remedies the past two days,  the montezuma's revenge has departed me for good. I can now actually walk the dog more than 100 feet from the motorhome, without bolting back for the restroom. We might even work up the energy to go start checking our mailbox regularly, now that we located and identified it. 

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  1. You could make the old mobile a happy place for very cheap if it came down to needing to use it. By some Thanksgiving talbe clothes the paper ones are really cheap. you could buy a few and just tape them to the walls one for the table and some colored napkins should cheer the place right up.Its really sweet of you to feed these people who could become life long friends. :)

    I'm glad you are feeling better. You haven't had a very good past few weeks or is a month.

  2. that should of been table :(~ But then I thought even those cheap plastic table clothes would work. And then they could always be used later for what ever.

  3. I'm glad you and Harley are going to have a nice Thanksgiving. :)


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