Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekend with the Masses

We made a late decision to camp out at Farragut State Park. Alex, Emily and Fisher have a spot in the Snowberry campground on Saturday night and we knew that we would not be in their camp area but we took the invite and drove out intent on finding a spot in Whitetail instead. As we entered the park the rain started. We parked at the park headquarters and talked to a real nice lady about camping. There were spots available in Whitetail like we thought so we took #51 and paid for the weekend. Outside the weather went from raining to pouring as we drove to the campsite.

Whitetail is on the lake side of the main road. We dropped down into the campground and circled around to #51. Most of the sites looked nice, but when we got to ours, we had a problem. The site was sloped real bad. If we parked there we would have to elevate the front of the truck quite a bit. So I jumped out into the rain and disconnected the jeep and sent Linda driving back to the headquarters to change to a leveler spot. She was only gone about 20 minutes and came back with our new location #31. (Sites 48 and 50 are the best in our opinion.)

By this time the rain had stopped and we were able to get set up while Linda took the dog for a walk. We had chili haystacks for dinner so my job in the kitchen was very easy. Following dinner we took the dog for a long bike ride/run. We returned to the camper at 8:30 pm and got things ready for the end of the evening.

I slept a little rough during the night. The alarm went off at 6 am and I got up and made my coffee. I jumped in the Jeep and drove to work, the traffic near town was real bad and that put me into work about 8 am. The workday was slow and at lunch time I went to the T-shirt print shop and dropped off the design for our river shirts. At about 2 pm I went home and took a nap which lasted until about 4:20 pm. I was supposed to be a Gary Coffman’s retirement party at 4 pm, so I jumped into the Jeep and drove out to Tesemini at Spirit Lake.

When I got to the party everyone was there and was standing around talking. Becky Coffman immediately came over and said “My daughter is having a baby!” to which I replied “I didn’t know you even had a dog!” My George Thoroughgood ear strikes again, I really need to get my hearing checked. Nice start to my celebration of her husband’s retirement don’t you think? The food was great and I ended up getting to fish a bit. There was a huge bass under the dock, but he plumb evaded me. After that I spent the rest of the time chatting and eating until about 6 pm when I snuck out and to get back to Linda.

The drive back to camp was not bad; in fact I got a real good look at a coyote running across the road in front of the Jeep. The camp host came by and we bought a bundle of wood from him, it cost $5 but for one night that is not bad. The host noticed my Habitat hat and we started talking about volunteering, full time camping and the wonders of retirement. I guess I just have to get used to these conversations and hope that they don’t make me too antsy to get out there. We went to bed about 9:30 pm and read, camp quieted down about 10 pm.

Saturday morning Linda got up and ran then walked the dog. I wandered out and had my coffee. When they returned Linda took a shower and I worked on her bike. Her bike is so old that the front gear cables have cracked and her cable has shot out of the covering making it impossible to shift. I cut the cable and pulled it to a spot that allowed the chain to run on the middle front chain ring. Then I looped it around and fastened it in place to one of her water bottle screws. Caveman bike repair at its best!

We took the dog and our bikes down to the event area and watched the start of the Gauntlet short course triathlon. This event is part of the Adventure Sports Week that was happening all week. Watching the event and its organization, I decided that our NIChallenge adventure race has run much smoother in the past then this one. We just don’t have the big XTERRA logo backing us. I imagine just having the ability for teams and individuals to qualify for a national event would bring more participants, that’s what XTERRA does for this event.

The start of the triathlon took some time because the swim pilon kept floating away turning the swim leg from a short course to a very long one.

After the event got started we rode around the area by the event area and returned home. I checked my phone and Alex had texted that they would not be out due to illness. That’s was too bad, we were excited to see their trailer set up and have dinner with them.

The rest of our day was walks with the dog, bike rides and I even went down to the lake fishing for a while. I tossed Mepps and Rostertails, but I guess the fish wanted something else.

We fixed dinner and ate around the campfire. We had Chicken Alfrado from Costco with garlic bread. After dinner we walked around both campgrounds and enjoyed seeing the million of different camping arrangements.
Back at camp and as I type this blog entry, a horn starts honking in the distance. One of our fellow campers has opened their vehicle doors and the theft alarm has sounded. I smile, this is the sixth time that we have hears a horn sound “honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk, honk!” I am sure it is not the last time this will happen. It’s one of the large campground events that I look forward to when we stay in these facilities, that and the sound of heavy sleepers snoring in the distance.

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