Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Trip

Ummm, it was a good day and a an odd day at the same time.
The new tire I put on the car took care of the vibration problem - a good thing considering a 300 mile round trip.
Caleb and I talked most of the way up there. I knew I wasn't going to see him again for 2 months unless I make a trip up there and I don't even know if he wants that kind of intrusion. It was a nice drive and I was glad I was able to do it instead of someone else doing it for him.

Such as my mother, who wanted to take him up there. No, mom, I'm doing to do it, I WANT to do it, but thanks for the offer. It isn't any kind of inconvenience for me, at all. I hadn't been up that road in quite a while, I had forgotten all the construction that was going on a few years ago - and still is. They are turning a long stretch of 2 lane highway into 4 lanes, divided. I don't really like it, to be honest. My memories are of a small, narrow, 2 lane highway surrounded by the woods. Now it's 4 huge lanes with a huge divider and the woods are well off to the side.

But, that is neither here nor there, just saying.

We got to Heber and went to a steak house for lunch. Not giving him up quite that fast, lol. He had a buffalo chicken wrap, I had a rib eye steak.

We spend some time talking there as well. We also watched a group of bikers pull in. One of them put out the kick stand, got off and started walking away. The bike - a Harley - fell over and smashed the pickup truck next to it. Ouch!!

Then came the time to go to the camp. Just a few miles down the road. We pulled in. I was in awe of the size of the place. Very clean, kempt and very nice layout. 15 buildings I am guessing, anyway. We got out of the car, went to an out door covered area where there was some people sitting at picnic tables with laptops. They were part of the staff who introduced themselves and we introduced ourselves back. Led inside the building where the real management was, apparently. One man was obviously the dude over the entire place.

Very charismatic and definitely in charge of the place. He introduced himself and we all got into a conversation, though I didn't want to interject myself too much, this is Caleb's deal, not mine, he is going to have to figure this one out on his own and this is what life is about.
I do feel he is going to fit right in with that crowd and I believe he is going to do very well, but that, of course, coming from a potentially less-than-objective viewpoint considering I am his father and I am very proud of what he has done and what he is doing with his life. FAR better than what I did at his age.

So, anyway, got done with the paperwork - he can sign for himself now that he's 18, lol, and then he got into a golf cart thingy with that guy and another leader and I got into my car to follow them to his new living quarters for the next week. A LONG drive, too. Passed all kinds of buildings, including a huge mess hall, a large church and numerous smaller buildings that were designated for varying purposes.

We finally pulled up to a grouping of 3 large buildings. "Cabins", if you can call them that, for the girls. The boys and the girls are separated by QUITE the distance in their quarters. One thing that did hold true, though: large rooms filled with bunk beds. Reminded me of when I was a kid. I have to admit, though, my memories of staying in real cabins struck me as better than staying in modernized buildings. I am a true camper at heart, I can stay in a tent, sleeping bag and have all my own stuff and not have ANY of life's modernizations around me besides what I brought with me and be PERFECTLY happy.

The time was rapidly slipping away, I knew I would have to bid him good bye and I didn't want to do it. Call me sappy if you want. I won't see him for 2 months, but it's a taste of things to come, he will be gone soon enough into his own life and I will be a very small part of it. I will always be there for him as long as I am alive, of course, but the natural course of things is for the offspring to depart from their parents. We took his things in there and then back out onto the porch, where I asked the guy in charge to snap a pic of us. He said he would be honored to and snapped off 2 photos.

We then left those buildings, Caleb got back into the car with me and we drove back up front. We got out, I hugged him and said goodbye, as did he. My son is a gift to me, I will always think that way about him. There are certain things in my life that I consider extremely precious, Caleb is one of those. The only thing I can do now is pray for him. My mother is going to go up there and take him out to lunch sometime during his stay - he doesn't have to work 7 days a week, they get free time on odd days and she asked him if it would be okay, of which he said of course.

And that was it. I watched him walk off to the picnic tables where we had started this out with and then walked into the building. He looked back and waved, I waved back, turned the car on and left.

It was a "nest is empty" moment for me. But, I am happy for him, I hope he has a good time up there.

I wasted no time, though, getting out of there when it was time to leave. Sunday afternoon, people heading home from the mountains, popular thing to do when it starts getting warm. The highway was already getting filled up and I didn't want to get stuck in a huge traffic jam. Admittedly, however, that thought hadn't even crossed my mind until I had actually left and saw what was going on out there. It took a bit longer to get home than going up there with the traffic, but it was a nice drive so no biggies.

That's it.

ben

3 comments:

  1. Monday

    JD shows up early last night.
    What's up? I ask him, you're hear early.
    Well I wanted to ask you about that note you left the other day.

    The note was to the kid tenant: stop telling people to get off of the computer, thank you. He will tell people flat out to get off the thing because "I need to use it".

    Not in MY house that kind of s*** isn't going to happen. Well, I started explaining it and then the kid tenant (he's like 23 years old, I think) comes out and interjects himself into the conversation. He got instantly into "in your face" mode and I was having none of it. I got right back in his face and then he left the F bomb drop.

    I was all over that. Hey dude, let me offer this proposal to you: STAY THE **** OFF OF MY COMPUTER. I got flaming mad at the point he let the f bomb drop and yes, I raised my voice considerably. No need to go into all of it. He lost, I won. He backed down, still tried to argue, I just said the same thing: my way or nothing. It's MY computer, I will have done with it as I please.

    The problem with this kid is he doesn't ever try to see things through another person's eyes. He ONLY sees things through HIS rather tunnel-visioned eyes and he seemingly doesn't CARE what is going on with anyone else. I did try to get that through his thick skull last night: try just for once placing yourself in someone else's shoes.

    I'll just get off of that now. I just read an email from my manager: apparently Monday has blown up. Too much to do, too many people wanting things done at such and such a time, are we going to be able to do it, please try to be ready to leave by the time I get there. He shows up later than I do by design.

    June 7th through June 9th. The commercial vehical safety alliance. This is an annual thing, I think. They pull trucks over and do inspections. When I say an inspection, I mean open up the hood, get out the creeper and crwl under the truck, THAT kind of inspection. Besides the AC not working the thing, everything else is cherry. Working AC is not, obviously, required as a functioning part of a tractor trailer rig. I do not, however, want any part of any inspections and I will avoiding their favorite places to pull trucks over, even if it means going out of my way to get somewhere. I have HAD that truck inspected, 6 ways from Sunday, it's in excellent condition. Inspections take time, too much time.

    Umm, well anyway. The Big Weekend is over, Caleb is up in his temporary new life in the mountains, I will wait until the weekend and see how it's going. He's only doing training this week, kids don't actually start showing up until Monday. I'm sure he'll do fine, in fact, I fully expect that he will excell in his position and that they will love him up there. He is great with kids and he has already been in a leadership role through the JROTC as a commander over 60 kids. I expect in life that he will be management material wherever he goes, if that's the case and if he "succeeds" in life - then my job is over. He will have done better than I and that is good with me.

    Bad news: the Wallop fire may take down both Greer and Alpine, AZ. I have spent some time in Greer, it's a popular vacation spot for Phoenicians to go up into the mountains and get out of the heat during the summer. They are evacuating both towns. The fire is out of control, has zero containment and God help those people that live up there. Pray for rain, that's all I can say.

    Well, time is up and I am going straight to work.

    G'day.

    ben

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  2. The kid sounds like he has trouble sharing. Great incentive to get ahead and buy his own computer.

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  3. He's totally in his own world. He doesn't even consider the thoughts or feelings of others. I spoke to him about that last night, I doubt it was well received.

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