Monday, June 19, 2006

Father's Day 2006

Unlike my son-in-law on the "Wet Coast" who spent the early morning re-creating in a tupper-tippy on the Pacific Ocean, my father's day was a bit different - "quite out of the usual, actually!"*

Actually the morning was pretty mundane - finances! I plowed through the budget, the tithe/offering check, the Visa statement (and it took adding one account five times before I got two of them to "match"!). Breakfast was the usual: cold cereal, orange and peanuts.

The afternoon: now that's a whole 'nuther thing! Our pastor was discouraged about "camp pitch" for the upcoming 8 days of campmeetings that our church conference sponsors for its members this time of year. I decided I would go and help for half a day to lend my support to the effort. The weather was forecast to be in the 80s with high humidity. In fact, there was a nice on-shore breeze that kept the temperatures at the coast more moderate and the conditions more humane.

All the staff of the church's summer camp (including one of my nieces) and most of the pastoral staff and office staff presented to help plus a retired pastor and his wife ... and myself! My pastor and my cousin's husband were two pastors that didn't come - they were at the funeral of one of my fellow church member's dad's.

I had never thought about "how" exactly the military-style tents are actually erected:
1. metal pipes (dispensed from a pallet-rack) on a trailer pulled behind an old Farmall tractor) are put into orange-blazed receiving pipes sunk into the ground in a grid

2. wooden pallets (3 in number) which form the floor are centered in the grids and "shimmed"

3. long 2X4s are "lashed" to the pipes between the tents

4. tents are opened up flat on the floors and the corners tied to the long 2X4s

5. center ridge beams and tent poles are put into it and hoisted into place.

This all proceeds sequentially across two fields with floor pallets going into the first field as the pipes are still being placed in the 2nd field, etc.

By 5:15 about 50% of all the tents were fully erected and the tents were "out" on most of the rest. And we started at about 1:15 PM! That's a lot of of hard team work to make that happen.

Thunderstorms are forecast for the next couple days - today was hot, humid, and hazy - beginning tonight. The camp staff are living in the tents they erected, I am led to believe. So we will pray for the safety of the staff during the remainder of staff pitch.

Today I have fine crop of bruises from manhandling the floor pallets and long 2X4s. And assorted stiffness and aches here and there. Of course, it doesn't help that I came home and mowed the lawn for about an hour after eating supper. We made up for it tonight with a shorter than usual walk before heading off to get hair cuts (Jean and I).

*Parent Trap