We were expecting it to be busy, but somehow I did not expect it to be as busy as it was. Yes, we had lots of families camping together in celebration of Father’s Day. They came out in all the usual modes of camping, from tents to 40-foot motor homes. All of them wanted the same thing—a couple of days rest and relaxation at the campground, fishing, roasting marshmallows, enjoying a campfire, and enjoying the family.
So, on Friday night, as usual, we were covered up with people checking in. We had more than 160 check-ins for the day, about 120 of them between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m. Everything went pretty good until the boyz showed up. This was a really haggard looking bunch of about 5 guys who wanted to rent a tent site. Now, I am not against groups of people camping in tents, but the management here has a rule that there must be at least one person per site who is 25 years old, and we have to card them to make sure they are.
Another rule that the management has is that there are no overnight “guests” on a tent site. The tent sites can have a maximum of 2 adults per site. If there are more than 2 adults, they have to rent another site. If you have a so-called guest, that person must pay the tent rate to stay, because there is one tent per site. I really do understand what the management is trying to accomplish by doing this, and that is to cut down on the number of teen beer parties on Friday and Saturday nights.
So, as the Night Shift Supervisor, I have the most pleasant task of informing the teeny boppers that they cannot stay at this campground when they arrive to get a tent site for the night. Now, try to imagine this guy, covered with tattoos, bandana on his head, baggy shorts drooping down over his butt crack, saying, “Well, my mama is camping here and I’ll just go get her to rent the site.” And I say, “Is she going to stay on that site with you all night?” And he says, “No, she is just going to rent it.” So I say, “No, you can’t do that. What you can do is pay for camping and put a tent on her campsite.” They didn’t want to do that, so they finally left. And I get on with the rest of my job.
The rest of Friday night went by in a flash, with no other out of the ordinary occurrences. On Saturday, I had about 30 more check-ins, and loads of people with loads of money buying stuff in the store. It was a constant stream of people, which made the day go by fast. We had a retail clerk at the candy counter until 6 p.m. After she went home, there were two of us left to handle the crowd.
My co-worker was 15 years old, not old enough to sell cigarettes in the state of Pennsylvania. So, no matter whatever else I was doing, I had to stop and ring up cigarettes for our customers. Not such a hard thing, except that as the Night Shift Supervisor, I have other duties I must complete before I go home for the night, such as counting the cash drawers from the snack bar and the mini golf shack; doing the sales reports from those two places; calling people who have made reservations and who have not paid their deposits after 7 days to request payment of the deposit; filing a large stack of paperwork that was given to me with a note that said “Do Not Delegate”; and about 10 other miscellaneous tasks. I felt like I was up to my neck in alligators that night.
About 3:30 p.m., a guy comes in and want to register as a guest of his friend. I asked him his friends last name, and he did not know it. I asked if he had his friends telephone number, and he did not know that either. So I asked if he knew what site his friend was camping on. He did not know. But, if I would let him in he could just drive around and find him. I asked if his friend was camping in a tent. He said yes. So, I told the guy he would have to pay for a tent site, he could not camp as a guest on a tent site. He did not want to do that, and again asked me to let him just drive around and find his friend. I told him again that we do not allow that. He left.
So about 5 minutes later, he came in again, and went to my co-workers register. He started saying the same things to her. Since I am the Night Shift Supervisor, I asked the customer I was assisting if he could wait just a moment, and stepped over to where Tammy was working. I told this man again that he would have to pay for a tent site to get into the campground. He said, well, can I just go in and pick out a site before I pay? I said, NO, YOU CAN NOT. We will register you and assign you a site, and if you don’t like it, you can move to any other tent site that is available, but you have to pay FIRST. He finally agreed to pay, and I returned to my customer. But, I heard him saying to my 15 year old co-worker “That woman is such a bitch!” I started to call one of them maintenance workers and have him escorted out of the park, but I didn’t. If that happens again, I will do that.
Then, at about 9:30 p.m., a man came into the store and told me there was a domestic dispute going on at that group tenting area. He said that a guy had his wife on the ground, punching her and kicking her, and that some other guys who were camping nearby came to her rescue, and a big free for all ensued. So, I called the campground owner on the radio and told him he had “an incident that needed attention”. He went down there, and called me on the radio, and told me to call 911. So, I had a radio to the boss in one hand, the telephone with the police in the other hand, trying to get the cops out here to apprehend the jerk, when a woman who wanted to buy cigarettes comes up and is indignant because she can not pay for her cigarettes!!! Give me a break, lady.
So, the police arrive and go up to where the altercation is “in progress”. My husband had to go up there too to lead the police to the scene. He said that when the police arrived, someone pointed and yelled, there he goes right now. He was in a truck trying to flee the area. The police cut him off, and he jumped out of the truck and started running. Jim said it was just like on COPS on TV.
In the meantime, the woman came into the store. She had a baby about 6 months old, another one about 18 months old, and a 3 year old. She and all her children were crying, I had about 25 customers in the store trying to get checked out, and one co-worker trying to get it all done, as I was still on the phone with the 911 operator. I asked the guy on the phone if she needed to go back up to the scene, and he said if she wanted to press charges, she need to go back up there.
So, I told her that, and she started screaming that she didn’t want to go up there because he was still there. I got off the phone then, and told the girl that she either had to go back up to the scene to press charges or she would have to go outside and sit on the bench out there, but she could not stay in the store. Yes, I really felt sorry for her, but I had other work to do. If she didn’t want to go through with pressing charges against the jerk, there was nothing I could do for her.
I finally got her out of the store, and sold all those dang cigarettes. Why is it that I feel bad that I couldn’t help her? I had nothing to offer her in the store. Should there have been something else I could have done? It took us longer than usual to get the store closed, cleaned, the money counted, lock up and go home. I was glad to get there. I still had Sunday to go.
On Sunday, I arrived to find out I was scheduled to work by myself from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. I was so thrilled to learn that. What a good time I had. I still had the no deposits report, the check-ins for the coming week to check for accuracy, the confirmations batch to run, retail sales, the phones ringing off the hook, the little kids wanting to redeem their tickets from the arcade games for the little junky prizes, email reservation requests to handle, etc., etc., etc. And after the store closed at 8 p.m., I still had to sweep and mop the store, stock the bottled water in the cooler, straighten all the shelves, empty the trash cans, count all the cash drawers, do the cash report…It took me an hour to get it all done. When I got home I felt like I had run a marathon. Tell me again why I like this job?
On Monday night, Jim and I and our co-worker, Linda, had our own little Mexican fiesta. I made black bean and shrimp nachos. She made a delicious dessert that started out with gluten free tortillas. Spread with a cream cheese filling, top with fresh fruit. OMG!!! Yummy was the word for that. Oh, did I mention the margaritas? Yep, and I had three! I had forgotten how good a margarita could make you feel. I couldn’t feel my legs for about an hour or so. Linda was the one who went to the liquor store for the tequila. I have always bought Jose Cuervo tequila, but never again. She got Herra-Durra brand, and I have to say, that was the BEST tequila I have ever had. It would be dangerous for me to have a bottle of it in the house. ¡Vivo la vida loca!