Friday, March 5, 2010

It's all relative

Excuse me if I sound like I am still ranting about this resort campground. I'm not. Really! I have a point to ponder. But the circumstantial path that leads me to my point might seem to have a rant or two along the way, and maybe a bunny trail too. (You've been warned.)

The dreaded day came a couple days ago. As hubby dressed for work, he lingered in front of his sock drawer. I didn't have to ask, but I did anyway. "What's wrong?" I already knew he was about to put on his last pair of clean socks but for some reason I just needed him to confirm the fact. And he did, with a mumble and a wave of the socks in the air.

Now see that red building WAAAY over there through the trees? 

That's where the laundry/club house is. I have two choices in how to get there. 
  1. I can take the long way around on the ice packed road.
  2. I can take the shorter route and cut through the perfectly spaced woods and deep snow.
I'll save you the suspense and tell you I tried both routes because I couldn't carry all our dirty clothes in one trip. I made several trips actually. I preferred the deep snow to the ice. Lately I've had more sudden meetings with the ground than I'm comfortable with, and I don't heal as quickly as I used to. (My leg still hurts a bit from my visit to the winery last spring.)

I tried to look on the bright side as I tromped through the snow--I was "upping" my heart rate and burning more calories than if I'd had an easy, short trip. Dodging the occasional fallen pine branches and piles of deer turds made my day even more dashing! With every high marching step I took, I chanted. This - IS - a - re - sort! This - IS - a - re - sort!

Here is the laundry area inside the club house/arcade/pool shower house.  
 Only two washers and two dryers.
This place gets a prize for "multifunctional building." Actually, it kind of resembles the place where garage sale rejects go to retire.

We are still dealing with the ice packed slope where we are supposed to park the truck. Once we slide in, we still can't get back out so Rick has been parking on the ice packed road and carrying his stuff (file box, computer, camera, GPS, lunch, appointment book, etc.) up and down the hill every day. We use two long extension cords to plug his truck in every night for an easy start and a quick warm up. This does, I have to admit, add to the adventure.

I asked the guy who seems to be the caretaker around here if he thought he could do something to help get some of the ice cleared away so hubby wouldn't have to walk so far up an icy hill to the truck every morning. Basically I was told...No.

Yesterday they cleared off the spot next to ours and here is what that drive looks like.

Here is ours still covered with ice and snow anywhere from 1/2 to 3 inches packed hard.

So today with a bag of rock salt and a square shovel, I started to do what I could to bless my hubby. (I have to climb this icy slope too when I carry out trash or do laundry, so my labor was not totally selfless, but don't tell him that.)

After several minutes of whacking and banging and chopping at the thick ice with the shovel, I decided what I really needed was an ax. Where is Jack and his ax when you need him? 

About that time a truck pulled up in the cleared drive on the other side of us and four big, burly men got out and headed into the camper parked next to ours. Two of them stopped to watch me. "What are your trying to do?" one bellowed.

Sometimes I'm too quick with the wit for my own good. All these answers popped in my head at once.
  1. Shape up and slim down.
  2. Make you ask stupid questions and I'm succeeding.
  3. Look like a fool.
  4. Rid the world of winter.
You'll be happy to know that, because this guy didn't know me, I decided to contain my wonderful wit, and I gave him the straight up answer--trying to clear the drive enough that hubby can get in and out without getting stuck. I didn't add the part about wanting to be a blessing to my husband. I figured it might sound a little mushy to this guy who looked like he might be a bouncer.

"If you'll wait til Tuesday, it should warm up enough to melt all that off."
Okay, so maybe answer #3 would have been more fitting.
I tried to explain that I knew it was supposed to warm up some, but since our spot is so heavily shaded I felt like the melting process should be helped along. And hubby wants to park near the camper TODAY!

After a little small talk and more advice from him, I could tell that he thought I was really wasting my time. I could contain my wise cracks no longer. "I thought about doing this the female way and use my blow dryer on it."

He let out a scoff, "I don't think you'd make much progress."

The rest of the men came back, they all got in the truck, and as they drove away, I thought, Buddy, you just don't know my blow dryer when the turbo button is pushed!

I went back to attacking the ice and all the while thinking about how far from a resort I think this place is, and how the owner seems proud to advertise it as a year-round resort. It's all relative.

I had a chat with the manager and caretaker the other day, and I learned that we are in "Hicksville." (Their word, not mine.) No wonder I thought I could hear Loretta Lynn's voice singing "I'm proud to be a coal miner's daughter" echoing off the hills as we drove along the Ohio River the day we arrived!

This area has many little towns--rural towns--but DSL has not even found its way here. Dial-up is the norm. The campground manager told me that for this area, this campground resort is a high-end place. She compared it to the nearby state parks, which few have any hook-ups at all, and none have 50 amp electrical service. So, as far as these people know, when they look around and compare this establishment to their neighbors, so to speak, this is a really nice place with its limited but fast wi-fi, its 50 amp service, its you-keep-it-from-freezing water, its outdoor pool, its two washers and dryers, and its ONE site with concrete slab that has no electrical hook-up.

This kind of relative thinking works great doesn't it? As long as we compare ourselves to something or someone less than we are, we will always look pretty good--high-end!

Jesus talked about this kind of relative thinking. We can read about it in the book of Luke, chapter 18.
10"Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11The Pharisee stood up and prayed about[a] himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.'
 13"But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.'
 14"I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."
And what happens when someone comes along that we perceive to have more or be more than we are? (I've stayed in some RV resorts that make this place look like a dump, relatively speaking.) What a way to cheat yourself out of all life's joys, and forever be labeled a lifelong looser. That's not good either. Relative thinking can be deceptive thinking, depending upon your object of comparison.

Thankfully there is a standard against which we can measure our condition--sin and short comings. That standard is the holiness of God. I don't know about you, but when compared to that, I'm humbled and definitely not up-scale or high-end.

Once I accept that accurate assessment of my sad condition, then I can measure my worth against the one and only worthy standard--the sacrifice--Jesus Christ. Would the King of kings and Lord of lords have died for anyone of no value? A dump? A loser? I don't think so.

So I ponder this point where I'm camped. Somewhere between a dump and a resort, condemnation and glory, this blood bought saint finds hope, peace, and...well, you A dashing and bold adventure!


LaVon Baker said...

Oh my!! I'm sending this to our friends who are here in Arizona from Ohio so they can see what they're missing.
I am so impressed that you held your tongue with all those "wonderful" thoughts running through your head. Too funny.
It's very encouraging to me how you are being a blessing to hubby while making the best out of a less than desirable situation. We can do all things through Christ who gives us strength, can't we?
Love reading your blog!

Talkin' Texan said...

You are a bright spot in my day! Thanks so much. When someone tells me they like to read what I write, it strokes my fur and makes me purr. :)
So glad you enjoy it and are passing it along to your friends.
Enjoy your AZ sunshine! And thanks for reading and commenting. Blessings!

Edie said...

Oh girl I know while you were tromping through the snow to that laundry room, you weren't too happy but you sure have a great sense of humor as you recant the story for the rest of us. Thanks for the laughs.

I can't believe not one of those guys had the decency to offer to help you in any way.

Enjoy your dashing and bold adventure! :) That always makes me think of the song on the Little Mermaid II. This one...

Here are the lyrics...
Braving the tides, swarming the sea
Beware barracudas, drop to your knee
Defending our friends and enemies
As big as a whale but with a much smaller tail

Facing the foe with our fearless wit
Daring the dastards to put up their dukes
Great gobs of gore, we'll storm the shore
And seek the unknown, then can we go home?

Titanic Tip and Daring Dash
Adventurers slash explorers
Titanic Tip and Daring Dash
Adventurers slash explorers
We'll save the day and make a splash
Titanic Tip and Daring Dash

We'll clobber those crabs with their clammy claws
We'll sever those sharks with their savage jaws
The battle is fierce and mercifully brief
Because they're heroes they return as kings of the reef

Dine with the best, dressed with a flair
Climbed every mountain because it's there
Come on, follow me, we'll make history
To courage, to us, I'll try it, you're bust!

Titanic Tip and Daring Dash
Adventurers slash explorers
Titanic Tip and Daring Dash
Adventurers slash explorers

We'll save the day and make a splash
Melody, Tip, and Daring Dash
All for three and three for one
Atlantica, here we come!