Our morning started off pretty good. Slept good (me…not so much for Michael). Michael made breakfast. About 9:30 a truck pulled up in front of our site and I heard something clanging but didn’t think much of it. About 10:30 Michael went outside just to look around and found a large container on the off-door side of the coach. Seems that we have been delivered a ‘dump station’. We found out later that a pump service will come every Tuesday morning to pump it out. Which works just fine.
We took a walk around the campground to get our bearings. It’s a very nice campground that sits on the north side of Ocean Pond. There are 67 sites total, 19 of those being electric & water. There’s a primitive area with about 15+ tent sites and a bathhouse there as well. There’s a boat landing for campers to use. Each site has a picnic table
and fire ring/grill. It’s a very pretty place and well-maintained…I think we’ll be happy here over the next three months.
While on our walk we met 1 of the three couples that are here to camp host. They were very informative, giving us the scoop on places to visit and restaurants to check out. They’ve been here since the beginning of September and will be here until the end of December. There hosted here last year as well. Looking forward to getting to know them better.
We also stopped and talked with Jim, another of the camp hosts. His site is closer to us. He and his wife Bonita are here until the end of December as well and this is their first time volunteering too.
We have yet to meet the third couple and Jim’s wife…but I’m sure we’ll meet them all soon enough.
While we were on our walk we got quite the welcoming when we came across a HUGE (I’m not joking here, folks!) spider basking in the sun in the middle of its web. I tried to get a picture but it didn’t turn out…probably cuz I was WAY too far away. I got over that encounter and we continue our walk back to our site and Michael stops me….in the middle of the road is a flippin’ snake slithering across the road. Ugh! That I got pictures of! The older I get the more chicken I become…I think I’ll be spending a good majority of the time in my home! Did I mention that there are bears and alligators around the park too?? Pray for me, y’all!
Allison (the volunteer coordinator) stopped by this afternoon to bring me some paperwork, give us some t-shirts and so that we could meet since all we’ve ever done was communicate via email. She was only here a short time but she was very friendly and welcoming.
We decided to take a drive around the area to get the lay of the land and find out where the different areas that I will be working are located. (Ranger Station, Visitor’s Depot & Gatehouse) The gate house is here at the campground while the visitor’s depot & ranger station are about 6 miles away in Olustee which is very small….there’s pretty much a small gas station (no longer sells gas) and that’s it!
While we were out we met the volunteer couple (Cecil & Carol) over at the Olustee Beach area. Olustee Beach is very pretty with a large picnic area and boat landing but no camping. Olustee Beach is on the south side of Ocean Pond almost directly across the lake from where we are at the campground.
We chatted with Cecil & Carol for quite some time before moving on. Super nice couple! We talked about having a potluck with all of the volunteers…doesn’t sound like something they’ve done before. Hopefully we can make it happen.
I still have several days before I start working as I don’t start until Tuesday morning and that will just be going in for a safety meeting. I’ll actually start working on Wednesday morning. I’m really looking forward to it.