Sunday May 29th to Saturday June 4th 2022
Well it is another Sunday morning, it is after seven o’clock by the time I roll out of bed, I think I’m starting to get used to the afternoon shift. Today is our regular Sunday morning television routine as we catch up on the world news and of course the latest school shooting in Texas, it is time that my American friends actually do something to stop this, and arming every teacher with an assault rifle doesn’t seem like the correct answer to me.
I have an extra project for today, the lawn mower started leaking hydraulic oil on Thursday while cutting the lawn by the office, and they just towed it to the storage yard and left it. So I suggested that I could look at it, to see where it was actually leaking, because some of the suggestions didn’t make much sense to me. So after a little checking I found it was just a hydraulic hose that feed the steering valve, which made sense as that was one of the first things to fail, according to the operator. An hour later and all three hydraulic hoses were off and I was able to verify the cause and it was determined that we should replace all three, so they will order new hoses on Monday.
It is another cold wet dreary day here on Vancouver Island, so not a lot on my list of outside projects today, so I settle in to watch the golf tournament out of Fort Worth Texas, always a good watch and this year was no exception. I’m on the afternoon shift again today, but just five hours long it still involves the evening lock-up process, as well as the closing of the pool, so there will be less things getting checked off of the “Book of Joy” oh well. Now as I look ahead to the June work schedule my hours are cut down to 25 per week, which is not a concern to me, but if your behind on all these tasks why cutback the hours the staff is working?
My shift tonight is 4 pm till 9 pm, I still have to lock-up followed by a night of being on call, so my actual work time is from four o’clock till six thirty, then I take a half hour dinner break. After dinner I normally make my first security run, which is simply a ride around the campground to see what is happening, this gives me a pretty good idea where any issue spots may be later. By seven thirty I make my way to the pool area, Bruce has told me that the health board is coming to check the pool tomorrow, again the new guy is prepping the chemical levels for the inspection. either very trusting or just plain crazy
Tonight there is no one in the pool, so I double check all the levels and decide to add one chemical to help the hardness level, it may effect the Ph level but I decide to add only add 6 cups of product, clean the skimmers, I didn’t even have to backwash the filters tonight so I locked up the pool at a few moments to eight.
From here I head up the hill to the office, where I check all the doors and windows to ensure everything is locked, next I lock the woodlot, take a drive around the entrance to confirm everything is ok. Now down the hill to lock up the storage yard, before making my way to the camp-store to do a lock check at the store and the mini-putt, next the clubhouse to check windows and doors and lock up the laundry for the night. Before my final security round of the park, tonight is quiet, not a lot of campers and really no areas of concern this evening, and after last Sundays antics I’m good with a quiet night.
I head to the coach to catch up on some YouTube videos and enjoy some rhubarb crisp with Miss Laurie before heading to bed around ten with my phone nearby as I am my on-call evening.
Monday morning and just another wet day on the island, and if one more person tells me that it isn’t normally like this, I may just totally loose my little mind. Part of Miss Laurie’s task is getting the irrigation set up for the gardens, and I keep thinking why! It rains almost every day, it is kind of like Florida that way, the sun can be shinning and there will still be rain for a few moments, and I do understand a lot of Vancouver Island is a rain forest, but we are struggling to get temperatures above 21C (70F), and with the first of June just a couple of day away, it would be nice.
Tuesday my first day off this week and I’m up and ready to head out to get the toad serviced, I have an 8:30 appointment time, not a time that I would have picked but I understand scheduling shop load and in early should mean I’m out early so a quick breakfast and I’m off on my adventure. My intent is to drop the toad at the repair shop and wonder into the village of Chemainus to check out some of the murals that it is famous for, and wait for a phone call telling me that the toad is ready.
Well that call never came so is noon came and went I decide to wonder back to the repair shop, that is when I discovered the toad still sitting where I had parked it, to say I was annoyed would be an understatement. I got up and rushed to be there at 8:30 and now four hours later it had not turned a tire, I knew then that this was not what I had hoped for. And after expressing my displeasure I sat in the waiting area and started to write a blog.
When I got back to the coach, I explained to Laurie just how disappointed I was with the “service” that I had received, she suggested calling them to complain, but I could not see anything to be gained by that, so I pulled the toad over to our shop and adjusted the tire pressures, and shut off the “Oil Service” lamp, and we headed to Walmart in Duncan for this weeks supplies.
Wednesday also my day off, but because I had pulled the hoses off of the lawnmower I offered to go and reinstall them as they told me that the new hoses had been made up, that way Larry could cut the lawns on Thursday. So after breakfast I head out around ten o’clock to install the hoses and get the mower refilled with hydraulic fluid and at this point I’m thinking I will be back by noon at the latest.
And here is where I start to realize that getting things done on the island may be a little more difficult that I had realized. I had sent three hydraulic hoses into the shop to have them made up two were done correctly, but one was not. And not to bore everyone with a lot of numbers and sizes, lets just say I needed three metric sized hoses and who ever made them up did two metric and one standard. And of course the only hose that was actually leaking was the one that they made up incorrectly.
Unlike our previous position, here I just report to a supervisor, and then wait, so after lunch Bruce comes back from the hose shop with the same hose and a bunch of plumbing fittings, to change the fitting to metric, my first thought was that this is just a cheap way for the hose shop to avoid making up another hose, but I find out that they didn’t have the correct fittings, so they couldn’t make up the correct hose. The problem was that where the hose attached to the hydraulic pump there was not enough space to install the fittings that they sent so now we needed to wait for more fittings to arrive, I also suggested getting more fluid as the unit held 12+ liters and we only had five or six. So at this point I’m thinking I will head to the coach to enjoy my day off. Wrong I was as they had received the parts for the drain in the rental house that I had ordered a week earlier, so they would like me to repair that today if I could.
This was a major task as the previous repairs were patch upon patch so I was going to replace everything under the sink, and as I started to remove the old plumbing I now realized that I would need a new strainer basket, that is the piece at the bottom of your kitchen sink that has the little basket that acts as a strainer and a stopper, it is also the piece that seals the bottom of the sink to the plumbing under it, and this one was rotten so now because the sink is inoperable now, someone is going to town. After designing and fabricating a new sink drain I’m done for the day, the fluid and fitting had not got here yet so at 4:30 I called it a day.
Thursday, my last day off this week now because of the lack of golf carts Laurie and I share one when she need to work on the irrigation system which is today so at nine thirty we headed back to the shop to see if my fluid and new fittings had made it yet, they had so I gathered up my tools and we load the cart with Laurie’s irrigation supplies so she can drop me off at the lawnmower before heading off on her tasks of the day. After some attempts I get the hose attached to get the mower operable. But now the mower won’t start, nothing to do with the hoses but not something we have time to diagnose right now, booster cables and we get it running, and check the hoses for leaks, confirm the steering, and Larry is off to cut the lawns, and I’m heading back to the coach to spent the afternoon in the Clam with Mr. Sam and write a blog about poor service.
Friday my only day shift, 8am to 4pm and today I’m the guy on the cleaning of departure sites, only five guests checked out today so this task only used up about hour of the day. Today we have limited staff on with just two people from the maintenance staff on shift. today is preparation for the weekend, like making sure the woodshed at the store is full of bags of firewood, the price of fire wood took a jump in price from $10 per bag to $12 per bag, a bundle of kindling stayed the same at $9. The park purchases the fire wood by the truck load, and then has an outside service comes in and bags and stacks the bags of firewood, and with the minimum wage rising here on June 1st it is effecting many of these menial labour intense jobs, like bagging firewood.
Part of my day was spent finding a bad connection on the electrical system of the Kubota lawn mover, the same one that I was repairing earlier for a failed hydraulic hose, now it won’t start without a boost. I found that there was a dirty connection on the ground cable at the battery, the battery itself when checked passed a load test, but was not fully charged most likely because of the resistance at that dirty connection. Now it starts every time as designed, so I move the mower back to the maintenance yard, ready for its next required usage. The rest of the day was spent finishing off little projects that I had started earlier in the week, like the security box that I built to enclose some of the internet connections used in the park, I will try and get it mounted tomorrow night on my night shift.
So I’m back at the coach shortly after four o’clock after what has turned into a much busier week that was on my schedule, and we are back to burgers on Friday for dinner, Laurie and I have been on opposite schedules so far, as she has been learning the operation at the store, the office, as well as spending time in the gardens, but tonight we are enjoying an evening together, but with the noise from the mini-golf has causes us to close the window on one of the very few lovely evenings since our arrival.
Saturday my first security shift of the weekend but it all starts with the wood run, my first night since the change in the price of the wood, but it was much less of an issue than I had suspected. I guess the the transient guests have accepted the price increase, possible because other parks were higher than us before. The park doesn’t seem that busy this weekend, possible the wet forecast has dampened some camping plans. I top off the wood in the woodshed and return the wood truck to the wood lot up the hill near the office. Now I refill the truck for the next wood run and return to make my first security round of the night, just a quiet round to check the playgrounds, the swimming pool, and mental note of areas with groups gathering, and now we have the clubhouse open, with a TV viewing area, a pool table and a shuffleboard, and is open from 9am till 9pm, then its off to the coach for some dinner.
After dinner, I make my way to the swimming pool, and go through the process of closing the pool for the night, because of the over night rain the pump filter needed to be cleaned, but the readings did not indicate any issues. Just routine cleaning and filter maintenance, then locking the gate at eight o’clock, now another check of the playgrounds before heading to the workshop.
This evening I also have to shuttle Laurie to the managers office at the top of the hill with the end of day from the store, Laurie has worked the last shift today and part of her task is taking the day end receipts to the manager, and for security reasons I will accompany her to the office and back. After this I’m installing the lock box for the internet that I built earlier, and as I finish that little task it is time to lockup the clubhouse for the evening, by now we are getting some rain sprinkles again, as the last outdoor task I have tonight is replacing the basketball nets, I had been hopping for a dry period to happen it didn’t so here I’m in the rain installing the nets. Now up the hill to check the office and close the woodlot gate, a check of all the night lighting, and then back down the hill for the next security round, ensuring the playgrounds are empty, and looking for “hot” spots, and it all looks quiet, the rain is damping most groups so I suspect a very quiet evening. Some clean-up time in the workshop followed by one last security round and this week is in the books.
Rain Rain go away … please