Because we did not have our fill of walking, we decided to meander over to Indian Steps after our lunch of hamburgers and pizza mountain pies.
Now this is a road!
And because our house was only 20 minutes away, and the facilities at the campground were described as “primitive”, we decided to get our showers at home, and then stop at the Collinsville Drive In for ice-cream on our way back.
I had steaks waiting back at the camp for us to grill – nothing better than char-coal. We came back to our steaks, and to neighbors. They kept rolling in, surrounding us. And they were all together. Jason and I sat in front of our campfire, looking over at one of the smallest campers we’ve ever seen, and was entertained for the evening. It was like watching reality TV. We kicked back and relaxed, cracking peanut shells, and experienced the drama of Jimmy and his family.
We soon learned about Jimmy and his dream. But unfortunately, Jimmy’s dream was not supported by his family. “Jimmy, I don’t want you going back to jail!” Jimmy wanted to be a marijuana farmer in California. “The national government has legalized marijuana in California.” Jimmy declared (and obviously proud of this knowledge). His brother (?) advised him to stick with drinking alcohol and earn a decent living here like he did. But Jimmy did not like this idea. “My mother was an alcoholic”. We learned all about Jimmy’s mother too.
Sadly, Jimmy won’t be able to start this dream of his until 3 years from now. But his parole will not hold him back from making plans. And once he can leave the state of Pennsylvania legally again, he’s going to prove his family wrong. If he can just get somebody to help fund his business venture.
Suddenly, out from nowhere, a spider of extraordinary size fell under the gaze of one of the men – it could have been Jimmy. Bang! I thought a gun went off. I actually thought they shot the spider. (remember, we had a limited view due to their camper & trees – but thankfully we had surround sound). Nope, it wasn’t a gun – thank the Lord they didn’t have a gun amongst themselves – it was a frying pan. Spider guts must have been everywhere. The kids were screeching in delight. Did I mention that along with this interesting group of adults, there were hundreds of children of all ages? As the evening’s dramas unfolded, there was also children dramas going on simultaneously. All 5 senses were utilized in our entertainment that night.
Soon the sun went to bed and our faces glowed in the campfire light.
“Get the *&%^$ away from me!” Yelled some man from the group to some woman. A few minutes later, as a few of the guys stepped into the woods to relieve themselves, the woman joined them to talk. “I respect him! I do the dishes and clean up after him, I do his laundry. I respect him! He’s just upset because of his ex wife – Pearl.”
I swear, I am not making up these names.
This woman was on her phone too much – the man had had enough. Suddenly Jason and I heard a pop! and we saw a flash of light outlining the tiny camper. All was silent for a minute or two. Jason and I looked at each other. Did that just happen? Did what we think happen actually happen? Oh no he didn’t. Snap snap, shake of the head.
“You just threw my phone in the fire – I can’t believe you did that!” Yelled the girl who respected the man who just threw her phone into the fire.
“I told you to get off that phone!”
“I’m leaving! I’ll be at _____’s party (his son’s?), but that’s it.” She cries and storms about – he locks himself into his truck.
All too soon it’s at least 11pm and the kids are herded into the camper (it’s like a slave ship – how did they all fit?) and into tents. Jimmy tries to get into a tent as well, but because he’s been following in his mother’s footsteps that night – he couldn’t figure out which side the door was on, despite the kids directions. I guess he gave up and decided to keep the party alive for a few more hours.
More drama unfolds. And as each drama carried on, the family would talk things out and forgive each other. It was a beautiful thing to behold. Music played. Literally, all night long and into the morning. They did not turn their radio off and for that, I was pissed. I couldn’t wait to wake up in the morning and slam my camper door, play my radio loudly and make a ruckus, causing them to wake up, headaches raging.
But dang if they didn’t wake up early (how the heck can a person recover from that kind of night so well?) and before I did. We could hear them all down by the river.
Jason and I packed up and left before they returned.
I only have one regret. I didn’t get a picture of their camper.
Good luck Jimmy. Happy farming.