4th of July was a few days ago but the 4th was an interesting day for us. Da Boss made the 150 mile round trip from home to come in and sanitize showers and take care of a few other problems on her day off. And we decided we’d hop into uniform and bop down to the Southern end of the Dunes for some photos of The Dunes with people in them. Too bad we never got that far.
It turned out that our day was just one of those days that make the frustrations of volunteering all worth it. It was all about PEOPLE.
As we drove out of our compound I remembered there was a couple at Lagoon Campground who had been talking to the host about volunteering. So, what the heck we stopped off to see what was on their mind!
We immediately hit it off and spent the next three hours there spreading the Gospel of Volunteerism and Life on the Forest. I think we may end up with a couple of volunteers but they needed some time to consider their options and we’ll hear in a few days.
While we were talking I had been sitting at a picnic table with my back to the sun. As I write the backs of my ears feel hot. I’m wondering — can you sunburn the BACK of your ears? ????
When we got done we discovered that the 4 way flashers on our SUV had drained the battery so the camp host (who owned no jumper cables) drove me up to our compound to pick up our jumper cables and soon we were on the road again….
We stopped off to see the paranoid volunteer with meth house dreams — just so see how he’s doing. I think he’ll be leaving soon. Whether or not his suspicions are true there’s no way for him to convince Law Enforcement that anything is going on without evidence and he’s too concerned for his safety (rightly so) to be out there writing down license numbers and descriptions of the supposed participants. Our legal system might work well in many areas but there are times when the cost for being a good citizen puts the good citizen in jeopardy and I will be the last person on earth to tell a volunteer to do that. We’ve offered him alternative locations and they are not appealing to him (then again if you are THAT frightened I’m not sure ‘appeal’ would have that much to do with the situation). So he pretty much said he’s looking for some other living situation.
Then, down the road to Reedsport to pick up some bleach (just in case) for our pump house at the compound — our well supplies water to the 150 camp sites downhill from us.
And, then down to check on the volunteer who had been ‘restraining-ordered’ out of their park model trailer. Nothing about that story makes much legal sense to us but then life is often a bit strange on the Forest and there have to be aspects to the story that have not been told or shared. So, we gave them a place to hang out for a couple days until they can get a weekly motel rental — rooms are at a premium for the Fourth. They’ll get the situation sussed out and their lives will return to something similar to normal.
While we were there, the couple who’d been evicted from the Forest for Marijuana possession stopped by to schmooze. They are doing well, they are happy in North Bend and have found out about a specialty baker in Port Orford who makes fantastic sourdough bread. Sounds like they might attempt to go into some sort of joint business relationship with the baker — not sure how that would work out but in the surface it sounded like a legit plan. We have learned to be a bit skeptical about volunteer plans though… some of them are filled with hot air. 🙂
And finally we stopped to see the another volunteer, the one who’d been through both upper an lower GI exams earlier in the week. We wanted to stop by to see how she was doing. And to express concern and give her a smile and let her know people care. She and her family have been here close to 4 years and she’s part of the family.
By that time clouds had descended on the South Dunes and we gave up our photography hopes. We’ll dress up again tomorrow and try again. It’s easier to park where we want and do what we need to do without drawing attention when we are in uniform. And it will be nice to have images of the Dunes in “use.”
Thanks for stopping by and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.