Five down; zero to go!

Saturday, October 26th:

Oh-oh!  I must have forgotten to set the alarm last night.  We’re an hour late getting up, but we still manage to hustle and make it to Activities before the 9:00 opening time.

We’re all here.  Where are the campers?  We’ve finished all the opening procedures and now we’re just sitting here staring at each other.  It’s 10:00.  People finally start to drift in.  Then all hell breaks loose…There are so many people waiting to buy crafts or sign out bikes and so many people out in the room waiting for paint or help with tie-dye T-shirts that I don’t catch Mark’s attention till I’m out of $1 bills.  He goes up to get more and in the meantime I give back change in quarters.

Lunch time!  Mark and I take second shift.  We have to make it quick so we can be back in time for the pumpkin patch.  When we get back, Mark takes off to photograph kids coming to plant their pumpkin seeds, and then coming back two hours later to pick their pumpkins which have “magically” grown!  This is done in hay wagon load after hay wagon load so it takes all afternoon.  Kathy and Melanie are riding on the two hay wagons to help kids on and off.  Sherry is attending to the line outside Activities.  I’m inside all afternoon alone to handle Activities.

“I want to paint something but I’m having a hard time deciding what.”

“We want to rent bikes.”

“Can you help me make a tie-dye T-shirt?”

“I need some paint.”

“We want to rent clubs for putt-putt golf.”

“I’m ready for glaze now.”

Etc.  Etc.

My feet hurt.  I’m tired.  When Mark and I go home at 6:00 I go to bed for an hour.  Mark goes to Soda Steve’s and gets us chicken tenders and potato wedges.  I wake up at 7:00 and scarf them down.  I don’t want to work the trail tonight, but there’s no help for it.

We leave at 7:30 wearing our masks and walk the half mile in the dark to our assigned location.  I can’t see very well in the dark.  Yikes!  Was that a puddle I stepped in?  My left foot is soaked.  The fog machine isn’t working in the Upside Down Room the way it’s supposed to.  Jeff comes through and works on it.  Now the smoke is irritating my throat.  My feet are killing me.  I’m so tired…

A group comes through and one girl is saying, “You can’t touch me; I can’t touch you; you can’t touch me; I can’t touch you!”

Another girl, another group, screams at me, “Don’t look at me!”

What time is it?  Shoot!  It’s only 8:40.

There’s no place to sit between groups.  Mark stands at the door to listen for people coming.  Someone’s coming.  Mark claps his hands to set off the mechanized tortured person hanging on our wall and yelling while his innards are being eaten by a rat.  Then Mark runs into my room and we take up a slow dance position.  I lean against him while we dance.  Once the people have noticed us we break up and go to them to spook them.

Now it’s 9:10.  I can barely stand.  When Mark goes to the door to listen for people coming, I lean against the door frame.  All sorts of bizarre music plays over and over again.  Parents bring their toddlers on the trail.  What are they thinking?  One little boy that is obviously scared.  I crouch down to his level and hold my hand up.  His dad suggests he high-5 me so he does.  I hope he doesn’t have nightmares later.

9:35.  Mark suggests I sit outside on a picnic bench for a rest.  I’m sitting there giving my feet a break when the hay wagon pulls up to take a load of trail goers.  I get up and stumble over to the truck with my hands out in front of me like a zombie.  Rich laughs!  As the next couple groups come out of the Upside Down Room, I walk like a zombie to meet them on the bridge.  I go out to the hay wagon with a group.  When I turn around the woman behind me says, “Oh, I thought she was a part of our group!”  I act like I’m trying to get a group of girls on the hay wagon and they scream and move to the other side.

10:15:  Will this night ever end?  I’m back inside the Upside Down Room when my co-workers in costume come through and say it’s over.  We get on the hay wagon and Jan drops us off outside our RV.  As soon as we get inside I take off my shoes.  I think I have two infected toes.  I put Neosporin and Band-Aids on them.  I take a prescription strength Ibuprofen and we go to bed.  I hurt everywhere but I fall into a deep sleep.

Sunday, October 27th:

The alarm goes off this time.  Still we have to hurry getting ready because Activities opens at 8:00 on Sundays now.  Things are busy most of the morning.  We take lunch breaks and then Mark and Kathy and Sherry go up to wash golf carts.  This is supposed to be a quiet afternoon for me to clean up before closing Activities for the winter, but a family comes in.  I’m playing Christian music but I don’t change it.  What can they do to me?  Fire me?

I work hard at mopping the floors.  I get a blister on my hand.  Mark and Kathy come in after they’re done washing carts.  I guess Sherry figures she’s off work.  Mark and Kathy and I continue trying to close up shop, but Mark sends Kathy home telling her we’re responsible for this.  We make sure everything’s covered for the winter.  Everything that was moved aside for me to mop is put back right.  We empty the kid’s water table and clean it out.  We make sure all the windows are closed and locked.  We work an hour past closing, an hour which we are volunteering because they thought I should be able to do it all myself in the afternoon.

Finally done, we go out to dinner.  We order food to be brought to our table because I can barely move to go through the buffet.  Today is the end of our work.  Tomorrow night they are going to have an employee dinner for which we need to bring something to feed twenty four people.

I don’t plan to wear shoes any more than necessary the next few days.  We’ve got a few things to do to get ready for our move.  We have one last appointment at the VA on Thursday.  We’ll be heading out of here a day early on Friday.  We are so-oo looking forward to hitting the road again!

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