Saturday, November 13, 2010

(43-109) LIVE From Lake Pleasant, It's Saturday Night!!

Today’s post is being written as day light fades on Lake Pleasant. Here I sit in my camping chair, typing a word doc on my laptop, while Luis barbecues steak and grilled veggies, Jenny makes Guacamole at our table; Michelle M offers up Jell-o shots and other alcoholic beverages (although I'm not partaking:) and all of our kids play happily. What a FANTASTIC evening!!

The original SMF’s, Jenny, Michelle and I wanted to go camping, but we couldn’t fit it into our schedule; so we decided to make a day trip to Lake Pleasant. Michelle, Jenny and I went shopping for groceries last night; and even that was a TERRIFIC time. We all met at soccer at 710am this morning, since we had team pictures in addition to our 3 soccer games. Well, mine and Jenny' kids had 3 soccer games; and Michelle the trooper, went to Costco while we were at our third game, and purchased the steak and mushrooms that we needed for tonight's dinner; AND chunkeds up the vegetables that we were going to grill. Then by 315 we headed out to the lake.

Michelle and Jenny arrived before we did, and they told me that they had bought a day pass for $6 each, (2 for Jenny, because she had 2 vehicles;) and they said that I should check with the park ranger to see where we needed to go and what we needed to pay, in order to be able to stay into the evening, because they were under the impression that the $6 only entitled them to stay until 6pm. I told the park ranger that I had some questions, and he cheerfully told me that he had answers. Unfortunately, he had the wrong answers. He told me that we could stay until 10pm with the day pass and he pointed us towards the day pass areas. We met up our friends and headed off to the day pass areas. We chose a spectacular spot, overlooking the lake
with an abundance of tables under one awning; and we unpacked our cars. There was no fire pit as promised, but we noticed remnants of a fire and so we thought we’d be OK where we were; but Mike grew doubtful. I suggested that Mike look to see if he could find a sign stating that fires were prohibited and he didn’t but he was concerned about the signs that said the area closed at Sunset.

Mike called the park rangers and was told that in fact we could only stay where we were until sunset. They said that they would refund us on one of the day passes but that we’d need to buy an overnight pass. The overnight pass, was $17, and 2 cars were allowed for that price. Each additional car would be $6, so we’d owe a total of $29 and we’d already paid $24, but being the Queen of FAIRNESS, I didn’t think that we should have to pay anymore since we’d been given incorrect information, and spent most of our time packing up and moving around. Mike and I drove back to the park ranger, and I went up to the booth, sweet and friendly as can be. I told the park ranger (the same one that had “answered” my questions, that I was confused. I reminded him that he’d said we could stay until 10 with the day pass, but we were now being told that it was not so. I explained that we’d been moving around accordingly and asked if we could just trade the passes that we’d paid for and get an overnight pass instead; and he willingly agreed. OK, I’ll admit it; I was VERY satisfied with myself. And Michelle and I agreed that I missed my calling. Michelle said “No one can argue as good as you, when you’re right;” and I added “and even when I’m wrong.”

Mike and I scouted out a new location, staked our claim, rounded up everyone else; and finally settled in. There’s just something about being outdoors in the Arizona Autumn, that’s absolutely amazing. We have 7 children and 7 adults, and yet it's calm and quiet. Maybe the full day of soccer prior to getting to the lake, has tired everyone out and we are all in relaxation mode.

The sun has now set, and I’m typing in the dark; so I think I’m going to have to conclude. We’ve got dinner, Smores and a campfire ahead of us; and I need to help my friends. Today has been full of everything that I love; watching my kids play soccer, spending time outdoors and enjoying the company of our fabulous friends.
Till next time…

1 comment:

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

At least you got to stay without to much of a hassle! Sounds like a great time! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)