After months of not being sure exactly where we stood with the management of the Pinal County Fairgrounds in Casa Grande, Arizona, yesterday I had a meeting with the new fairgrounds manager and two of her key personnel. I’m happy to report that she was just as upset by the actions of her predecessor as we were.
She has assured me that the rate will stay the same as we had agreed to with the previous management, and that she and her staff will do whatever it takes to make our upcoming Gypsy Gathering rally a success.
We have been worried that there would be problems for our Early Birds, because the fairgrounds is booked for another event on Sunday. But we have worked out an arrangement to get everybody in and parked. We may have to shuffle a few folks around a bit once the other event ends, but we’ll try to keep it to a minimum.
Several people have written to ask about day passes, because they either don’t have RVs yet, or are staying in one of the local RV parks and don’t want to have to move their rigs. Day passes are $5 per person per day, and include all rally events. If you are coming in on a day pass, just stop by the registration table to pick up your pass.
I know that this is an RV blog, and I don’t want to get into a drawn out political debate here, but I feel I have to climb up on my soapbox and respond to several e-mails I got about a comment I made in Tuesday’s blog in which I said that I do not believe that a person’s sexual orientation should prevent them from serving in the military.
That comment infuriated some folks, one of whom wrote “No American soldier wants to share a foxhole with a queer” and another who said “A homosexual does not have what it takes to face combat. They will turn tail and run every time.”
I always suspect that comments like this come from people who have never been under fire.
Let me tell you about a man I served with in the Army. His name was Sergeant Timothy Arnold. He was one of the most intelligent, honest, and genuine people I have ever known. He taught me a lot about staying alive, about being a man, and about accepting other people for who they are.
In a time when being gay was something that one had to hide to serve in the military, Tim, a career man, made no secret of the fact that he was gay. He never flaunted his homosexuality, but among his friends (and I counted myself among them), he used to joke and say “Boys, I should have been born a WAC (Womens Army Corps).”
But when the bullets were zipping past overhead, there was nobody I wanted covering my back more than Tim. He was absolutely fearless, and saved my life more than once. Tim went home on a stretcher, maimed for life. Not because he “turned tail and ran,” but because he left cover and went out under intense fire to drag one of our wounded men to safety, which he did regardless of his own injuries. Injuries that eventually caused his death, several years later.
So don’t tell me that my friend was less of a man than anyone else who served this country. I only hope that someday I can measure up to the man he was.
Thought For The Day – Problems are only opportunities in work clothes.