Our camp population has grown to seven permanent members, plus a volunteer who’s waiting for his fellow campers to arrive. We’re expecting at least one more camper today with the rest trickling in between now and next Tuesday. It’s a small camp – a total of only 20; but we play an important role as headquarters for the Temple Guardians, the site of on-Playa Guardian training, and a source of manpower to fill in if someone can’t make his or her shift.
We completed the kitchen yesterday and loaded up the 10’ x 20’ structure (originally intended as a canvas carport) with all the accouterments needed for gourmet (or at least utilitarian) cooking. In our kitchen we’ve installed a refrigerator, large commercial sink, storage shelves and several options for cooking the food. There are two propane fired Coleman stoves that will remain in the kitchen and two gas grills for outdoor barbecuing; we also brought a “fire pit” good for roasting marshmallows or just sitting around and chilling.
Yesterday, when the wind died down, we grabbed the remaining loose parts of the yurt and rushed it to completion. The wind easily turns the lightweight pieces into sails, and one missing section means no yurt at all; hence, it was crucial to take advantage of those few calm minutes. Now it’s in and operational, which means the head of Guardian operations has his own place to work and sleep.
The wind is up this morning so there’s no way to cover the shade structure with its tarps. It’s likely to turn benign late this afternoon, so we should be able to complete this project then. We’re working on building our camp shower right now. When the shade structure and shower are complete, we’ll be largely finished with the camp build. Then we’ll need to outfit the training area. It requires lighting, installation of the sound system and seating. Lashes and a mentor from our home community created three new benches and a seat this year in a system known around here as Playa-tech. Playa-tech furniture can be broken down into flat pieces for easy storage. The older benches are solid pieces that use up a lot of the precious storage space in our container. We will eventually replace all of those benches with Playa-tech furniture, but not this year.
We also have new neighbors. We’ve always been adjacent to Earth Guardians, but our other neighbor camp is now Vulcan. I was surprised to discover that rather than a Star Trek-themed camp, Vulcan is a circus and fire performance camp. We’re expecting lots of entertainment next door!
See you soon for my next update.