Maybe because schools are starting, maybe because people have already taken vacations, who knows? The RV park is back to being mostly those of us who are staying long term and only busy on the weekends. This weekend, we had a church group holding a marriage retreat that took up about half the sites in the park. They were very quiet and were gone before we returned from church today.
Here at Golden Bell, we get lots of what we call frequent flyers, those people who come once or twice a summer, or maybe even more than once a month. We look forward to having them come. It’s fun to catch up with them and we look forward to having them. We share in their happy times when a new grandchild is born and the sad times, when a spouse has passed away since last summer. Some we know by their first names, others we recognize the last name on the RV registration. Family groups are some of the most fun, or some of the most challenging, when several generations gather in a group of sites and think they own the park. Then again, there are weekends when everything is reserved and only half of them show up for whatever reason. Early this summer, some canceled due to 2 feet of snow in the forecast (do you blame them?) and yet others, including a single mom with teenagers, came anyway and toughed out the weather. That same family was here a couple of weeks back when we had monsoon rains for a couple of hours and ended up with a couple of inches of graupel on the ground. I always feel sorry for the ones in tents when that kind of thing happens.
Tents often present other challenges. Just this past weekend, two sets of campers came who had never set up their tent and/or had never slept in a tent before. LeRoy helped one couple and Mike and Gloria helped the other. One of those women was claustrophobic and I’m not sure how that worked out! One family early in the season stocked up on bear spray before they arrived and thought every sound they heard outside their tent was a bear, so they sprayed it! They didn’t make it through the night before heading to a hotel. I’ll have to admit, staying in a nice warm “tin tent” on a memory foam mattress is far more to my liking these days. My tent camping days are long past!
Three weeks from now, the Colorado District of the Nazarene church has their family camp here at Golden Bell and every available site in the RV park is blocked off for them, in addition to many beds in the lodge and cabins. It will be a busy weekend for all of us, taking care of whatever their needs are as well as getting ready for closing the RV park office. The park will still be open until the end of September when maintenance staff will blow out the water lines and close the park. On Labor Day, Mike and Gloria will be on their way to Yellowstone and other western national parks while we do the final cleaning and hauling electronics and welcome signs to the lodge. Tuesday morning we will finish loading up, drop by the lodge for last goodbyes and head for Kansas. But between now and then, there are people to greet, bathrooms to clean and trash to pickup.
See you down the road!