I was pretty busy yesterday. The Pathfinders are headed to Rhode Island on Wednesday for the Atlantic Union Camporee. Paul, our conference’s Associate Pathfinder Director was to take our trailer there today (Monday), so we needed to get it packed yesterday (Sunday).
Sunday was also the day we had planned to sweep the church parking lot. Everyone was to arrive at 2:00pm for that, and they were supposed to bring all their personal camping gear with them so we could get it loaded into the trailer.
Before the clock struck 2:00, I exchanged our empty propane tanks for two full ones, and bought some other supplies that we found we were out of at the last campout. I also took the canvases for our new kitchen shelter out of my garage where they had been drying for a week.
While some of the kids swept the parking lot, I had one staff member checking everyone’s gear. I had made a list, and they were supposed to bring everything on it. Most did, but others will be bringing a few forgotten items on Wednesday.
I was also planning to empty the trailer before we reloaded it. This would give us the opportunity to cull out things we did not need to haul, inventory what we had, and while the trailer was empty, refit the shelving. The shelves have been racking front-to-back and also they’ve had a tendency to tip towards the center aisle (but only towards the back). This puts a lot of stress on the two-by stock that supports them. I engineered some bracing that should put an end to that. The challenge was to brace the shelving in a way that wouldn’t present a nice surface for perpetual head-bumping. We also swept out the trailer for the first time since we bought it (it was filthy!)
Then at 4:00, we started a regular meeting. I had to rearrange our schedule because one of our counselors was going to arrive late. Paul was there to teach the Fire Fighting and Fire Safety honors we’ve been putting together, so we worked on that first. While we were doing that, two other staff members went out and bought the non-perishable food items for our trip. We wanted to compare our shopping list with our inventory before buying anything, and by clearing out the trailer, we were able to do that.
They arrived back in the nick of time, and then the kids practiced their drill routine while we loaded the just-bought food into the trailer. Our fancy drill team will compete in Rhode Island, so this was pretty much the last practice, except for whatever we wedge in while we’re there.
It was a long day, filled with logistical challenges, and I am very pleased with how it all came together (even though it seemed it wouldn’t at times). I think I can say that because of all this planning, we should have less “adventure” next week, and instead just have fun.
Before the meeting ended, we had refitted the trailer, reloaded it with the things we need, and Paul hauled it off. It should have had room to spare so Paul could fit the things he wanted to bring too (a pair of full-sized model mooses, one male, one female). Pretty sure they’ll fit.
It was a long day. I still have a few loose ends I need to wrap up (mostly paper work, but also some perishable food purchases), but I think I’m pretty much ready to go.