Well, we can put another year at SDF1, Campbellsville Amazon Fulfillment center in the books. My last night was Friday 12/21, and Al's last night was Saturday 12/22. The last couple of weeks were very busy, with no time whatsoever for any outside activities beyond eating, sleeping and working! We went to overtime starting on the 15th, which for the night shift meant 5 nights a week at 11 1/2 hours each night. Yes, very tiring, I won't lie! But it is satisfying to see a full checking account once again. And with the extra week of work and more overtime hours this year, we almost made up the budget shortfall I thought I would incur with my departing the beet harvest. I still feel somewhat like I wimped out on that, but I just could not deal with working outside in that blizzard! I regret reneging on my commitment, and promise it won't happen again :-).
What to say about the Amazon experience? Not very much different this year, a bit easier to deal with having been there, done that last year and now knowing what to expect. I won't deny its hard work, but really don't want to discourage anyone from giving it a try if they're so inclined. There are plenty of older folks than us doing it, and we're all tired and sore, but I figure if I can't keep up with them I have bigger problems than I know :-). It is physically demanding, but I find it much less mentally demanding than what I used to deal with, along with the physical demands. I will admit, though, if I were there much longer, I would need the services of my chiropractor :-). The Camperforce personnel in Campbellsville are also really great to work with. We make new friends each year, both other Camperforce workers and full time workers. We have a great campground to stay at (sshh we're keeping it a secret!). Yes, we are planning on returning next fall for a third season. If anyone is interested in working at Amazon next year, drop me an email and I'll fill you in with any details you might want to know.
So, we departed Campbellsville Sunday afternoon just after lunch. We had said our good-byes to most everyone we knew as we were one of the last to leave. Our very dear friend Laura was getting ready to leave right after us, and we did miss Shawn and Joy...they are staying on for a few more weeks, and I did not want to disturb their sleep! We ended up driving until pretty late, arriving south of Atlanta around 11:00PM where we stopped for the night. Another 6 hours on Monday found us arriving home for Christmas Eve, a very good thing!
So, what is next? Well, for the next three months we will be hanging out here in Homosassa, staying in our house and putting the trailer in storage, with a few trips out and about. The workamping job market in this area is quite fierce, and the monthly rental rates in campgrounds quite high. We have decided financially it makes more sense for us to stay in the house and store the trailer ($25.00 a month for trailer storage, how can you beat that??) while in Florida. We have a two week family reunion at Fort Wilderness to attend the end of January, as well as a short trip to Fort Wilderness to visit with my sister and her husband who are running in the Disney marathon. In March we are going to Pennecamp State Park in Key Largo for 5 nights. We also need to get our crack fixed, but have not made any progress on that front yet. The RV repair shop we initially tried here in Brooksville cannot handle the repair, and of course anyplace else is closed until after the holiday. So Wednesday we'll be jumping on that. They suggested that even though the trailer is out of its one year warranty with Keystone, it looks like there's a structural defect and that we should at least talk with them. I don't hold out high hopes, but we called and left a message with their customer service.
Al has already started his volunteer job at the Homosassa Wildlife Park, and I should be starting next week. So between that, visiting with family and friends, exploring the area more thoroughly, our planned trips, and a complete cleaning and purging of the trailer, we should find that the time will just fly right by and it will be April before we know it! And on to the next adventure :-).
Thanks to all my readers out there...family, old friends, new friends, and friends we haven't met yet! I am humbled to see that I have reached over 66,000 hits on the blog, it is mind-blowing to think so many folks find my ramblings worthy of reading! I hope to keep up with it, post more pictures and find interesting things to see and do here on the Nature Coast of Florida, and another awesome summer touring and photographing the beautiful area of Acadia National Park in Maine. Any and all recommendations of things to see and do will be most appreciated.
So Happy New Year to all, may we all have a Happy, Healthy and Satisfying year :-).