Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Aftermath of the Holiday and Rain

So, as I mentioned previously, last night it rained. It wasn't just a rain, but terrific thunderstorms. The ground shook type of thunder. It was so beautiful and refreshing! I think I went to bed last night giggling, listening to the rain.

I got up this morning---still cloudy...not raining yet, but cloudy. I was ecstatic.

And as I drove into work and into the park, the sign above greeted me. One day I will bring my Flip camera with me and have it ride on the dashboard or out the window on my way to work so everyone can see my beautiful drive in. About 2/3 of the drive to work, through the park, I come to Sycamore Crossing---it's a road through the creek basically. Water washes over the side of the bridge, covers the road, and then keeps on flowing freaked me out the first time we came to it, but now it's a lot of fun (when there aren't people on it that you're afraid you're going to hit). Well, with all of the rains last night the water is higher than usual and the crossing was closed so I came in the back way to work. It was exciting to see and of course, had to be documented (thus the picture). I likened the excitement to having a two hour delay for school. The novelty of it. I arrived wondering what else might be different.

I didn't have to wait for long to find out. When Lauren opened the building the alarm was askew, the backup drive on Lauren's computer was beeping and some of the electricity was out, including the air conditioners. Lauren investigated and flipped appropriate switches but to no avail. Dwayne was called and I'm happy to admit that several hours later everything is up and running again.

In the meantime, we opened the windows to get the air circulating. By this time it was raining a little harder and the sound of rain was so soothing....

Lauren and I had some errands to run....and then, came another high point of my day! Lauren gave me the cover for my hat!!!! [please insert the sound of angels signing here] I was soooooooo excited!

So of course, I took my picture with my hat and hat cover in the rain. Thank you Lauren!

Look at the way that cover protects my hat! I felt so jazzy in it! Exciting!

Then we were off. On our return trip we drove through Cold Springs campground to get a feel for the number of campers that were still in the park. There were some die hards but overall, about 75% of the campground was empty.

It was bizarre to see so many of the reserved sites now vacant...

with remnants of the 4th of July celebrations...

and picnics (that is an abandoned homemade tortilla on both the grill and the ground).

Some people were in the process of packing up. Again, I was absolutely amazed by how much STUFF people bring with them when they camp. I could not resist taking this picture of this truck, especially once Lauren pointed out the giant Cheese Puff container just piled into the bed of the truck with the other things. It seems though that when people come to camp here, they come with the goods---grills, chairs, tents, rafts, hammocks, cheese puff containers, and more....It's a sight to see.

And then there is the trash. Our maintenance crew here is very good. My documentation of the trash is not a statement about the park or the staff---it is just a reality of massive crowds on a holiday weekend. This is one of the CCC built trash designated spots....but whether it was the quick abandonment, the quantity of trash, or the rummaging raccoons, the trash definitely is everywhere and piled high.

Even at an area known as "The End of the World" there was an abundance of trash.
I definitely want to thank the maintenance staff for their hard work and give them a special shout out. I know this cannot be a fun job on weekends like this, but appreciate them making our park look healthy and pristine again.

And of course, in addition to all else, is the lost key scenario. The man in the water lost his keys yesterday and was hoping that maybe they would be found. We had a great conversation with both him and his friend. But alas, despite all of the help from other visitors, the keys were not found. An ABC piece of gum, mistaken for a key fob, however, was.

As a side note, it was pretty wild because the two men who were looking for lost keys work for OU. And, as luck would have it, work with the incoming freshmen quite a bit, especially the out of state ones. When Matt heard that I'm from DC he said he works with Banneker quite a bit to get their students out here to Oklahoma. Just wild. We knew the same people and I was very eager to tell him of one of my super students, Najah, who will be joining him out here in the fall. What a small, small world.


Jonny T said...

I can almost hear the sound of the rain hitting the grass. Soothing is a good word for it.