July 3, 2008: Camping Gear is Fun

Oreo and I have the day to ourselves at home today. The markets in the US are closed tomorrow and today is a short trading day so work was pretty slow, overall. It was a nice, relaxing day leading into a long weekend. I do have work scheduled for Saturday morning so I will be working some over the weekend but not very much. I will be doing that work from dad’s house.

Amazon reports that our huge collection of new camping equipment has arrived at Dominica’s parents’ house already and is waiting for us to pick up tonight and to take to dad’s house tomorrow to test out before doing some “real”camping next weekend in Watkins Glen, New York with our nieces. We are camping at the Watkins Glen KOA and not at the state park as we need electric and wireless Internet access. I have to have my CPAP so there is nothing to be done about the power requirement.

Today’s shipment includes a queen size sleeping bag for Dominica and I, two pink and faux-fur sleeping bags for our nieces, a really nice Coleman LED lantern, LED and Xenon wide beam flashlight, an enamel-ware settings set, air compressor for tires and air mattresses, two wall mount Coleman fans and our screened Weathermaster Elite tent with built in, remote-controlled lighting system. This is seriously luxurious camping. We also have one “regular height” queen size air mattress as well as our ceiling mount chandelier/ceiling fan combination unit already in the car, ready to go, as well as our tarpoline. The only thing that we have to get yet is our second queen sized air mattress. This new one will be a double height unit to make getting in and out much easier.

Everyone that we know (and that Dominica’s mother knows at work) are trying to get on the waiting list to buy our camping gear once we discover that we don’t like camping 🙂  This will be Dominica’s first ever time camping in a tent so we will see how this goes.  I still see all of this as a cost savings over anything else that we would have done so it isn’t as bad as it sounds.

I wasn’t really busy all day but the day was long because so many people were out today. I ended up working a twelve hour day and we weren’t able to leave Newark to head to Frankfort until about eight in the evening.

Traffic on the New York State Thruway was pretty heavy and it took us much longer than usual to get from Newark to Frankfort with the worst bits obviously being nearer to the city.  We stopped at a Thruway rest stop McDonalds to get dinner and save time but, of course, everyone else had the same idea and it took over forty minutes to get our food.  The poor McDonald’s crew looked like they were about to break down and cry from there being so many people in line.

What makes no sense to me is with McDonald’s having an almost hour long waiting line for food why all the other restaurants in the rest stop decided that closing up at regular time was financially advantageous to them.  I would have stayed open and taken the constant McD’s overflow if it was my money.  People often talk about “greedy corporations” but, in reality, corporations are normally a bit more lazy than greedy.  Had a restaurant owner been present rather than a corporate manager those restaurants would have been open for sure.

For the last half of the drive I listened to Joel Spolsky and Jeff Atwood in their “new” poscast Stack Overflow (episode twelve.)  Dominica secretly listened pretending to sleep and near the end surprised me with the declaration that she enjoyed listening to Stack Overflow because it was two really intelligent people.  Apparently she missed who it was doing the show.  She was shocked to learn that she knew Joel (not in person) and had read some of his articles.  One of the few IT personalities that she knows by name and reputation.  So this is a good sign that we might have found a subversive way to sneak IT learning in without overt objection.

It was almost one in the morning when we finally arrived in Frankfort.

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