I was sitting in our golf cart chatting with a 30-something camper when I had the distinct realization that I’m probably more biased than I’d like to accept. The thing is, I realized while talking with him how much I liked this guy! By contrast, I think I realized something I was not all that happy about.
One of the treats to me of staying in public campgrounds is that there seems to me to be a wider diversity of people than we usually find at private parks/RV resorts. That particularly applies to differences in AGE. Our experience has been that County, State, and Federal properties tend to be visited by people of all ages and incomes, and to some degree of ethnic diversity — though not a lot. RV’ing is still largely the domain of white americans so you don’t see huge examples of ethnic diversity. In the past we have noticed that here at Highland Ridge the extent of ethnic diversity might be a little greater than some other places we’ve camped. We do have periodic hispanic families and a surprising number of Hmong. The frequency of Hmong visitors surprised me until I learned that Minneapolis had been an immigration magnet for Hmong — at which point seeing them here made perfect sense: why wouldn’t they want to go camping! It’s a lot of fun!
But what I’m talking about today is the intermingling of young along with us older codgers. I have really been enjoying the presence of so many young families along with their kids. But then you know I love kids! I am tickled to have a chance to just stand around chatting with them; to hear their point of view; to learn about their goals and their devotion to family. Family has always been important to us and seeing that value carrying forward in tangible ways always makes me feel good. If there have ever been times when I have wanted to despair of the next generation it has not been when we were here! Sometimes you have to be in the right place at the right time to realize that our future is in better hands than might be feared.
Which brings me to my title for the day. I am coming to terms with being more of a died-in-the-wool Midwesterner than I like to think. There is something about the ethos of Midwesterners that just rings true to me. I had my fill of Good Ole Boys, Floridians and Rednecks; enough of seeing Confederate Flags and juiced diesel pickups spewing black smoke and making more noise than an 18 wheeler. (I don’t mind the fishing pole racks on the front bumpers!) There are just some aspects of people and society that I like better ‘up here.’
After this week’s publicity about the four drunkest towns in America all being in Wisconsin I have no illusions that Wisconsinites don’t drink a lot of beer, but I don’t SEE as many open containers in cars up here as I did during the winter in the S.E. That was particularly disconcerting. I’m sure they are around, I just don’t see them anywhere near as often here. I admit that our exposure to public campgrounds was a little limited this winter, but we put on nearly 3000 miles while down there and I admit to liking the mix of campers better as we have moved further north.
I’m not sure how I’ll feel if we make it to the desert S.W. this winter. I have been fine with Texas — it’s different than the S.E. — and in the past I have enjoyed my visits to the desert — we’ll see how we feel about living there if we get to spend this winter there.
We took on a new job for the duration of our stay here. We are doing Playground patrol. I never thought about whether people actually inspect playgrounds for safety, but I just found out that the CORPS does just that. And they have a form to report the findings, and insure that the necessary repairs are made in a timely manner. Hot Dog! I love that.
The Backpack Blower showed up in our morning delivery. I’m glad. There are a lot of areas of the campground I want to clean up and sweeping isn’t going to cut the mustard. Now if we can either stay dry for a few days so I can get this done before the stuff I want to removed blown off before it gets wet and sticks to the ground.
Well, that is our Sunday. All our campsites are cleaned for the next batch of campers. We’ll do our first playground inspection on Monday and then begin a new schedule of Tuesday & Wednesday off-days so that we are a little more in sync with our staff boss who’s days off are Wed & Thurs. We didn’t need to do that but we just thought it was a good thing.
Thanks for stopping by and I’ll be here again tomorrow to chat.