A Spontaneous Little Trip

3_CedarHello and welcome to the blog!

Friday was a rough day… well at least the first half.  I came very close to quitting the job.

Fast food is not easy to begin with.  Everyone’s underpaid for the high-paced, multi-tasked work we do.   It is extremely  stressful when we’re very short staffed and some of those who do show up are either late, stoned or spend all day taking frequent smoking breaks, leaving me alone in the kitchen covering 4-5 stations.  Yesterday I almost reached the breaking point … and knew it was time to take a little camping trip.  I was a basket case by the end of the day!

Camping helps relieve stress, particularly the work-related stuff.  The timing  for this little trip was good.  I’d recently been contemplating a visit to a favorite peaceful place fairly close to home.

4_VanCedar Valley campground is not far from where I live in Jones County.  It’s located along the Cedar River just west of the Cedar County town of Tipton.  The campground is just $10 / night including electricity – one of the best bargains around.

Serena didn’t go along this time.  She’s  feeling okay and probably would have enjoyed the trip, but I needed to relax a little.  There will be other opportunities.

Once arriving at the campground, it was easy to gather enough free wood for a fire.  A few days earlier a small footbridge had been constructed and the lumber scraps were placed in a fire ring.  I found other chunks of wood and soon the flames were shooting up and the wood was cracking.  Oh, how that heat helped with the arthritic pains and tense muscles!

2_WitchSupper was simple.  There was a delicious Caesar salad from the grocery store as well as a container of fresh cut fruit.  The meat was in the form of hot dogs from the Tipton Locker.  Their frankfurters (with cheese) were easily some of the best I’ve ever enjoyed.  There is only one left in the package and it’s reserved for Serena.  She LOVES hot dogs as much as her plain McDonald’s McDouble hamburgers.  (Jesse doesn’t like them – he’s all about seafood)

The picture above is eerie.  As I hovered over the warm fire and absorbed its radiant heat, it looked like someone was staring back from the embers.  Do you see what appears to be a homely face with an “eagle beak”?

Other than forgetting the mask for the CPAP machine, it was a very restful night sleep.  The heater was cranked to 80 degrees and all of the tension melted away.  Jazz music was like a lullaby!  The only interruption was the occasional crack of the fire or perhaps a deer in the woods.

It’s gloomy this morning.  There’s another Canadian air mass that’s plunging southward and threatening to bring a little snow.  It was bound to happen sooner or later.  It’s time to relax and hibernate a little and do some needlework.

1_BasketweaveFor those who enjoy crochet, here is the latest project – a “basket weave” stitch potholder / trivet.  It’s appropriate for one who was feeling like a basket case from nerves!

It’s almost a certainty that as the weather cools more crocheted items will pop up on the blog.  They  are fun to make and a cheap way to pass the time!

A lot of time really has passed.  It’s going on a year since Dad died and four years since we lost Mom.  Tomorrow is another day that can pass right on by… I’ll be 49… and wouldn’t trade that age for anything!

Have a terrific weekend and thanks for stopping by!

Bradford, the Van Trekker in Tipton, Iowa


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About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"

8 Responses to A Spontaneous Little Trip

  1. Sunday says:

    Happy Birthday and May God Bless You during your 49th year!

  2. Cathy says:

    Happy Birthday! From a new blog reader. I found you via thegoodluckduck

  3. Jo says:

    I made some calls today to see about getting away too.

    I bet fast food work is not pleasant when the staff are lazy and being high only adds to their uselessness.
    Sure glad you got away and enjoyed yourself.

  4. Pleinguy says:

    Glad that you were able to get away for some relaxing in the van. Sounds like it did you some good. Hope things improve for you at work.

    • VanTrekker says:

      Thanks… Work is work. Fast food is kind of a crazy, stressful environment. We manage to have some fun along the way, too! It’s definitely fast-paced! Take care. 🙂