"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Work, Rinse, Repeat

 First let me apologize for the long time span between posts, as the title suggests we have fallen into a routine here in the Black Hills and I have been a little lazy "blog wise". 

The weather here has been a bit of a roller coaster ride. We have had more thunderstorms than usual for this time of year and the temperatures have been higher than normal with several days in the 90's. Our two air conditioners are working OT to keep up on those days.

My work is enjoyable and I like doing the bus tours. I get to meet and interact with many wonderful people. I only work 6 hours per day, 4 days per week but we are so busy with visitors that my days are non stop. 

Rudee is back in the gift shop but her main duties have been in shipping and receiving. Her days consist of fulfilling internet orders as well as inventorying incoming stock orders. She has been extremely busy as everyone seems to be in a "buying" mood, which is good.

I picked up my golf game right where I left off .....mediocre. LOL 

I play in two leagues here at our local course; Tuesday is Men's League and Thursday is Senior League. I have been improving some but my season goal has been to break 90 for 18 holes. I have been stuck in the low to mid 90's for quite awhile and just couldn't break that barrier into the 80's. Well yesterday I finally got it all together and carded an 88! I was a happy guy to say the least. Now the hard part, repeating it. LOL

We had a nice "work camper" pot luck over the 4th of July week end here in the campground. Rudee and I skipped the fireworks show that Custer puts on each year, we just can't stay up that late on a work night anymore. I guess our "party bone" has arthritis! LOL

The next big even here in the Black Hills is the 81st annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Judging by the number of people vacationing here this year this one looks like it will be a BIG ONE! There are a huge number of campgrounds and hotels in this area and all have been totally booked since Memorial Day. We have trouble just finding a place to park in downtown Custer let alone a restaurant without a long waiting list to get in. Our grocery store is packed all day everyday and the staff is working OT to keep things stocked on the shelves. It's good to see everyone starting to travel and enjoy themselves after last year but WOW there are a lot of people here! LOL

Next week marks our halfway point to fulfilling our seasonal work commitment here at Crazy Horse. The time has been going pretty quickly but we are looking forward to our travels again to visit family and friends. I'll keep you posted! :-)

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Hi Oh Hi Oh it's off to work we go

 We started our summer jobs at Crazy Horse Memorial on Wednesday with "New Employee Orientation". This is designed to get new seasonal employees up to speed on the basics of working at the Memorial. I pretty much knew what to expect because the last 7 years I have facilitated different areas of the training but it was fun getting to know all the other work campers attending. They usually have a new group starting each Wednesday in May so there will be more new friends to meet in the coming weeks. Rudee will be back in the gift shop where she has worked for the last several years. She will be concentrating on shipping and receiving, which she enjoys, without the added responsibilities she had as a full-time employee. I will be a tour bus driver giving guided tours to the Mountain Carving. I enjoy sharing the history and stories of Crazy Horse as well as those of the Memorial and family involved in it's creation. We are looking forward to a great summer.

Friday was our first "official" day working at our new positions and we both jumped at the tasks with enthusiasm. Rudee settled right back into her old groove never missing a beat. I, on the other hand, had some "bumps in the road" ......literally! I was more than ready for my very first tour. I had rehearsed my tour "script" over and over. I had no difficulty driving the bus and was anxious to get the season started! My first group of guests were a great bunch. Everyone was happy, full of questions and were enjoying themselves as I drove us to the Mountain. There is a place roped off in front of the sculpture where we stop the bus and they can step off to take pictures. I always offer to help with photos, answer questions and give them more info about the carving. Well this is where things went a little wonky. One couple asked me to take their picture and handed me a very expensive looking camera with a very expensive looking lens attached. To get them in the photo as well as the full  600' mountain carving behind them I had to back way up and squat way down. OK, no problem, I can do this! Well I could have done it but gravity had other ideas about my abilities and I ended up on my backside like a turtle on it's back with my legs and arms flailing around above me! I managed to keep his camera from crashing to the ground by softening the blow with my elbow. That hurt but not as much as having to pay for a broken camera and lens. We all had a big laugh at my "klutzyness" and I invited them to my next performance where I would do cartwheels through the parking lot! LOL

The rest of the day was pretty normal but I think just to be safe I'll give up multi tasking and not squat at the same time I'm doing photography! LOL 

Our neighbor flew his drone over the campground and sent me this photo of our rig so I thought I would share it with you. Here we are all set up for the next 4 1/2 months. Our work days will be Friday through Monday and it's shaping up to be an interesting adventure. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, April 30, 2021

The long trek West

 We left our "moochdocking" spot in our daughters driveway last Wednesday. We had to delay a day because of a big storm making it's way across the middle of the country dropping snow and temperatures. Indiana got about 3" of wet snow on Tuesday night and I had to scrape off the roofs of the slides so they would close. I thought maybe Rudee would feel sorry for me and let me get slide toppers installed but since we have 5 slides she figures it's better to just spend that money to stay away from the snow! LOL The roads were clear and dry but it never did get above 40 degrees the whole day. Brrrrrr.

Our trip West went well stopping the first night in Iowa and the 2nd night in Sioux Falls, SD. We arrived back in Custer on Friday afternoon and spent a week at French Creek RV Park downtown. Each leg of the trip was about 380 miles and that distance worked well for us. 

Today we packed up again and moved to our summer "digs" in the shadow of Crazy Horse Memorial. Our 4 mile trip went well and we were not even "road weary" when we arrived 10 minutes later. LOL

We are the first work campers here but more will be arriving in the next days and weeks. We start on Wednesday with orientation and then back to the old grind on Friday.  I will be driving one of the tour buses that gives guests a closer look at the Mountain. Rudee will be doing shipping and receiving in the gift shop. Both of us are working 4 days per week and are looking forward to a little more relaxed atmosphere that part time work camping provides ........we hope! LOL I'll keep you posted!