Mar 042010

Things are really happening fast around here! The Yuma Fairgrounds is filled with RVs here for the Arizona Good Sam rally, and we have run into several of our friends who are here for that rally, and will be staying over for our Western Gypsy Gathering rally afterward.

Yesterday morning our friends Ed and Stevie Hackenbruch stopped by to drop off three containers of some of the most delicious, fresh, locally grown strawberries we have ever tasted. Yummy!

Unfortunately, before I could even taste one, I had to run up to the front gate of the fairgrounds to meet with the Good Sam folks about a couple of issues to make all of our lives easier.

Then I spent some time talking with some of the vendors, and those folks are our best advertisement, because they have convinced several of the other vendors for the Good Sam rally to stay for ours, too. We always try to make sure our vendors have a good show, and we let them know that we appreciate them for coming.

Our T-shirts came in during the early afternoon, so I picked them up at the fairgrounds office, and by the time I had them loaded into our van, I got a phone call that Greg and Jan White were five minutes out. Because the fairgrounds is not open to the general public and does not have RV parking except for rallies, we had to make special arrangements for a couple of our rigs to come in as part of our advance party. There is no way we could do everything that needs completed for the rally without our faithful volunteers. Greg and Jan will be busy the next few days collecting door prizes from local merchants, which is always a hard task, especially in today’s troubled economy.

Once we had Greg and Jan in and parked, volunteers Mike and Elaine Loscher came over to talk about some rally parking and registration details. Mike is our welcoming committee at every rally, and he does a great job of greeting folks as they arrive, and determining if they need to dump their holding tanks, need handicapped parking, etc. Terry says she could not handle the crowds at registration without Elaine’s calm, steady presence, helping her and the registration crew get everybody taken care of.  

Just about the time Mike and Elaine left, Bill Becker came by to pick up the T-shirts, so he and Mabel can start sorting and folding them. Did I mention how much we appreciate our volunteers?

As Bill was pulling out, Kelly Watkins, the fairgrounds director, showed up to ask if a couple of local organizations who hold evening meetings at the fairgrounds could still hold their regular meetings in the evening during our rally. Sure, why not? Kelly and his crew have gone out of their way to accommodate us. What goes around comes around, right?

The next order of business was to dump our holding tanks. It’s been about eight days since we last dumped, and we could have stretched things out a little longer, but we will only get busier between now and our rally, so we decided to get it done while we could.

With that chore out of the way, I pulled the Winnebago back into our parking area at the back of the fairgrounds, and before I could even finish hooking up water and electric, I got a phone call to come back up front. There was another problem.

Three RVs with folks from Canada had arrived and tried to bluff their way onto the fairgrounds by telling the Good Sam people that they were with our rally. Because other fairgrounds where we have held rallies do allow folks to come in early and stay, we have had some people who were confused and just showed up, expecting to be able to stay.

But this wasn’t the case. In fact, these folks were not even registered for the rally. They had just heard about it from somebody.  I explained to them that this week is the Good Sam rally, and if they wanted to pay to attend that, it was up to Good Sam, and then they could register and pay for our rally. I told them that only our advanced staff was allowed to stay on the fairgrounds. That’s when they assured me that they didn’t have to pay for either rally because the fairgrounds is public property and anyone can stay here.

I can handle confused people, I can handle stubborn people, and I can even handle stupid people. But freeloaders who play games really tick me off! That’s when Bad Nick came out! I told them that I didn’t want them at the rally. Then we discussed their concept of “public property” and my feeling about rude French Canadians (just the rude ones) in general, and them in particular. About then they decided it was in their best interest to leave and not come back.

That hassle finished, I went back to the motorhome, rounded up Miss Terry and our real advance staff, and we hunted down a Chinese buffet for dinner. By the time we had finished eating, I was more than ready to come back home and take my shoes off for the evening.

Today will be just as busy as yesterday was, and I need a favor. For the next two weeks or so, please don’t send me forwarded jokes, whatever the latest internet hoax is, or feel good stories. I just don’t have time to sort through them. If you need to get hold of me, please don’t hesitate to e-mail, and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible. But please, no forwards.

Of course, Bad Nick has been busy too. Besides running off freeloaders, he posted a new Bad Nick Blog titled The World’s Biggest Ghost Town. Check it out and leave a comment.

Thought For The Day – “Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.” – Mark Twain

Register Now For Our Arizona Gypsy Gathering Rally

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  6 Responses to “Things Are Happening Fast!”

  1. I seem to remember a discussion on one of the rv forums about some French Canadians who spent the winters freeloading in campgrounds by arriving late at night and then leaving early in the morning. They apparently were bragging about not paying any campground fees all winter. I wonder if this was the same bunch?

  2. Freeloaders are everywhere, I guess. Didn’t know it was a group strongly loaded with the French speakers! C’est la vie!

  3. I am Canadian and have to tell people that I am not French or even related. I thought that most of the French stayed on the east, guess they are not well liked there either. I would like to apologize for all of them. They really think they own the states too. In Canada we have to put up with them and every thing in French and English. It still amazes me that one province can dictate a whole country. The Federal government has funded Quebec for years. I could go on forever, but I have said my peace.

  4. I am Canadian and also a snowbird. Everywhere I go there are complaints about french canadians. Florida, Mexico and the U.S.A. The arrogant, ignorant attitude is just not acceptable in our world,.

  5. Just another Canadian checking to apologize for les Quebecois. There are a few of them that are decent folks but if you need a rule of thumb its best to assume they aren’t and hope to be disappointed. My grandfather came west from LaChute around 1920 and never went back. And for that I am eternally grateful.

  6. I work part-time in the office of our home park in South Florida. The place is predominately French Canadian in season. Our manager has found a way to keep harmony. Some guests have been told they are not welcome next year. He doesn’t play favorites. He calls ’em as he sees ’em.

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