Saturday, June 25, 2011

A bit strange to find my son's Facebook page, I didn't know he had one. I knew he had Myspace and other stuff, but not FB. I just read a news article online a few days ago about kids departing post-haste from Myspace and hooking up on FB, though.

Well, you go on someone's FB page and you can find out a lot of things about that person. Mainly, who that person's friends are. I already knew many of them from my Little League coaching days, to see them graduating High School and going off to the various things they are doing is trippy. That is not proper English and frankly, I don't care. Comes from MY teenaged days, and teenaged is not proper English, either, lol.

In one case, one of my assistant coaches son's is one of my son's best friends. That kid is going off to the Army.

I coached a lot of kids in Little League. Beyond that, I was an umpire for 10 years plus was on the Board of Directors. Occasionally, I get called out. "Coach"?!! You see a kid that was a complete - well anyway, a person that needed something more than their parents were giving them in life, putting it mildly, that has somehow at least partially transformed into a normal human being talking to you as if they were your best friend.

Perhaps a person, in some cases anyway, remembers a person that was influential in their life. One such case is the kid working at the theater. I hadn't seen him in a couple of years. He was a cry-baby and would throw temper tantrums in the dugout and on the field. I would make him go sit down in the dugout in any such endeavors and I would not cave in. This went on for quite some time. In fact, the entire season. His parents came up to me at one point and asked why I wasn't putting him at such and such a position.

I am usually brutally honest about things, rather blunt as well, when confronted by people in a hostile or otherwise non-civil manner. I mean, did you see your son throwing a tantrum in the dugout yesterday? Are you saying you didn't HEAR that nonsense going on? The kid, I thought, hated me. But when he called me out by name - baseball name/coach - at the theatre, I didn't even recognize him. He had a huge smile on his face and he had a confidence I certainly didn't recognize, either.

Umm, well this kid going to the Army wasn't a cry-baby, that's for sure. His parents eventually opted out of Little League baseball and became the leaders of the group that supports the JROTC in the High School that their son was going to. JROTC has a lot of activities and necessitates the participation of enough parents to oversee such.

I........uhhhhh............can say that volunteering is a great thing, but, after I got divorced it became a thing of the past. I can honestly say that I have spent tens of thousands of hours of my life in volunteering (that is not an error, I spent 5 years as a full-time missionary, that alone is over 40,000 hours worth if you count it in 24 hours days) in various things that I thought worthwhile and some of it certainly has vivid memories. I am not saying my days as a volunteer are over, hardly the case. Case in point it the neighborhood I am living in. But I have gone into that in the past and not worth going into again, at least not until/if/ever I attempt such.

It's occurred to me that success in life is hardly about money. Or fame. The saying that success is what you define it be is well and fine, but not conclusive. Did you live your life WELL? Regardless of whether you were broke or rich. Did you make the right choices? When it counted, did you do the right thing? At the end of the day, can you live with yourself in the life that you have led? You made mistakes. Of course. Sometimes, you outright decided to do the wrong thing. Granted.

This is a release type of blog entry. I must admit that I was not prepared for the complexity of emotion that I have experienced since my son went "off on his own". If you want to talk about a mid-life crisis, this would be the thing that has affected me the most. I have not cared, one iota, about my brothers and their "success" in financial terms. To find wealth and eliminate your family is not success in my book, it is total failure. The end of that line is emptiness.

Probably why I am going back to church is to find myself again. I lost it in divorce and pastoral shunning, but I refuse to let it affect me the rest of my life. I am not going to tell those people, at the church I am trying to get myself into, of my missionary past. I am not going to recount the days of volunteering in the church. I don't want to be pressed for the information, either. It isn't relevant to anyone but, perhaps, the Lord.

Ohhh, I could go on with this, but it is far past my bedtime, almost 11:00pm and I am fully intent on going to church tomorrow. Thankfully, it doesn't start until 10:00am and I did the wash today, clothes are ready.

Saturday 6/25/2011 Camp Pics

So there is going to be a contest at work: who can lose the most fat. Not who can lose the most weight, mind you, the most fat.
That makes a weight loss contest a bit fairer. It is pretty well known that a person that is extremely overweight who decides to lose it - and really goes all out to do so - can dump weight like crazy. If you only have 10 or 15 pounds to shed compared to someone who needs to lose 150 pounds, well, the contest is a joke if it's only about weight.

Well, I'll be all over this one. This will give me the extra added motivation to hit the gym and pump the iron and still go for my mountain walks regardless of hot it is outside. Not sure when the contest is going to start, but I have everything I need to get it going except - an MP3 player. I'm going to have to go to Walmart and get one cheap. Downloading the music is another matter entirely, cross that bridge when I get to it.

Caleb wrote me yesterday. Another fire. This time DPS thinks it started from a trailer being pulled down the highway. A tire went flat, the thing was riding on it's steel rim and the sparks started the fire, or so the theory goes. This one was adjudged to be around 2,000 acres, but they have it fully contained. Only 18 miles from where Caleb is, campers were sent home. A fresh load of them going up today as electricity was restored.

Yes, they and apparently the entire town of Heber was without power for however long. Although a disruption for sure, the temps up there are beautiful and that camp doesn't even have AC that I could see in any of it's buildings. So, the disruption would be in cooking and apparently they had to throw out a lot of food that spoiled because of non functioning refrigeration units.

Well, welcome to camping life. I have camped a good portion of my life in places that are out in the middle of nowhere and yes, definitely without electricity and that done on purpose. Get away from the electronic gadgets for a while and enjoy the peace that God has to offer out in a wooded forest somewhere away from people. You'll be surprised how refreshing and rejuvenating such an experience is - as long as you go fully prepared, lol. Tent, sleeping bag, cushion if hard ground isn't your thing; water jugs; coolers; ice; drinks; lots of food and some snacks; camp oven, on and on. I like to camp, yes, but I'm not an outdoorsman, I want some of the niceties of modern living with me!

It's still early. I was already out there cleaning out a pond filter and also replanting some plants just before it gets boiling hot out there and I don't feel like doing anything. A huge Taro uprooted itself out of it's container and was just floating there. Had to replant it and pulled some of the smaller plants that were growing off the side of it and replanted those as well. The water is not cooling down very much at night, so I am putting large containers of water in my freezer to put into the water during the day. I really need to put a waterfall in the middle of that horse trough which will cool the water quite a bit - I just didn't get that far with it today. I need to go to Home Depot and get some fittings for it for one thing.

Temps are going to get pretty nasty for the rest of this month. High today slated at 109. Yuck.

Some pics of the camp that my son is working at. Click on any pic to enlarge it.

This is their version of a chapel/church. Yes, they do try to get the kids saved, they make no bones about it and it IS the Salvation Army, after all.


My son and I standing on the porch of one of the - dorms I guess, whatever you call it where the campers sleep. Pretty modern type of setup.


What small town doesn't have a local gossip diner? Plenty of restaurants in this little town, but this one stood out because of how small it was and how many cars were in the parking lot. This has got to be the "locals" hangout for sure. Next time I'm up there, I'm going to stop there and eat.


The camp's leader, another young counselor and my son in the cart in front of me, heading to the dorm where Caleb would be staying. They give him his own room away from the campers to sleep in, but not too far away, lol.


View from the entrance to the facility. This place is huge. The building is an office facility plus sleeping quarters for the camp's leader.


To the right of the pic you will see a wooden structure. They have outdoor meetings there and it's also their "bonfire" setup. The forests are under tight clampdown: no open fires, bummer for the campers but good for the forest.


More of the sleeping dorms. Again, the place is huge, lots of buildings all over the place.


Just more dorms.


The last time I saw my son. He was heading into the office facility. Perhaps dad was feeling just a wee tinge of separation "anxiety", but I quickly got over it on the beautiful drive home.


The Rim. It's sort of not much of a drop off there, I should have pulled over and taken a pic of the extreme drop offs, beautiful views included at new extra charge.


No clue. "The Castle". Dilapidated dump. But interesting, lol.


How would you like to have one of THOSE things in your front yard?!! I wish I had had more time, but it was a Sunday, it was closing in on mid afternoon. I would have stopped just to examine those carvings closer and take a look at the price tags, lol.


That's it. I don't know if I'm the one going up there to get him or not when he's done, but that's still well over a month off anyway. Caleb was saying maybe the first week of August is when it shuts down, just before school starts.

ben