Today was the first day the site was open for visitation this year. This weekend, we're having our annual family-friendly spring fundraiser, which I posted about last year.
Before the event, I ran into a glitch- I turned on the water to the drinking fountain in front of our visitors' center and noticed that it was leaking water, so I had to turn it off again. I had turned off the water last November, so I don't know what the hell could have happened, but I'll put in a work order... too late for this weekend's crowds.
The best thing about this weekend is that a small army of our season part-time workers descends on the scene. I see a lot of people I haven't seen all winter. I am happy to report that my friend with Huntington's Disease looked a lot better this year than last- her neurologist has hooked her up with some physical and occupational therapists, so she has been able to mitigate a lot of the effects of the disease. She has retired from her "day job" as well, so she has been able to devote a lot more time to her health.
There's usually a bittersweet note to work- this year, I learned that two of the younger part-time staff members will be relocating upstate to work at a similar not-for-profit that will give them more hours. These two are recent college grads, and they are relocating to strike a balance between their love of what they do and their need to earn more money while paying less in living expenses. Luckily, they found an apartment together, as the new job is seasonal as well. I joked with one of them, who I confess I have a bit of a crush on, that she should look for bartending work as well, as a sideline. She studied abroad and tended bar in England, so she knows the business. A few weeks ago, I had a long conversation with the parents of another part-time recent grad (they came to the site to pick up their daughter after she'd gone with a co-worker to a workshop, and I "confronted" them, thinking they were parking so they could make out, which had them laughing, saying, "We're too old for that!"), and I had to ruefully note that their daughter had a "wonderful part-time job", but that she'd need to find a sideline in order to make a better wage. Education is not as valued in our society as hostile takeovers and leveraged buyouts. I'm going to miss my two friends, and I hope my third friend finds a good sideline.
On a happier note, a local cable news station sent a camera crew to the site to film a cute little puff piece pre-event. They interviewed a co-worker of mine who is a Renaissance woman (literally, she belongs to the SCA), a power-nerd who is into martial arts and historical re-enactment, who writes erotica and owns a small catering company. She gave them a great sound bite. The film crew also had some nice footage of Fred and Ginger. My two-legged co-worker told me that Fred had sat perfectly still in a "perfect cat pose, with his tail curled around his body" while the film crew set up for the shoot. As I noted a year ago, he has considerably mellowed- he used to hide when the site got too "exciting" for him.
It was a beautiful day, a great day to welcome everybody back to the site and to catch up on the scuttlebutt and to see my part-time co-workers in their glory. They are a dedicated bunch of people, and it's a pleasure to watch them interacting with the public, imparting their wisdom and expertise. I missed them all winter.