One of my favorite quotes from “Sweet Home Alabama” is when Reese Witherspoon’s character is told “You can have roots and wings”. This is a difficult concept for me. Those who follow our social media are well aware we followed the road back to Oregon and the questions have been many. In truth, we never planned on leaving Clio’s and the stunning Sierra Nevada’s early. We loved the managers and our co-workers and the chance to explore a new region. However, the truth is also that for two years we have been searching for a paying camp job in Oregon or SW Washington, something that is far harder than you might imagine.
The world of workamping has some interesting variances, one of which is that camp jobs in the lovely Pacific NW most often pay little or nothing at all, expecting work in exchange only for a FHU site(full hook-up for those not in the know). Why you ask? Well, hard to say. The beginning of workamping saw many retired singles and couples with retirement or pensions who simply wanted to keep busy and enjoyed free rent and the ability to see different parts of the country. Another theory is that this region of the country is so popular campgrounds are able to entice workers on location alone.
This opportunity is as surprising to us as it may be to all of you. After our decision to break ties with Camp Coeur d’Alene we have felt somewhat adrift. We had a great job for the season in Clio’s and plans to work the holiday season at the JC Penney’s warehouse in Reno followed by the holidays in Oregon before another caravan with Baja Amigo’s. Beyond that, we were simply planning on going with the flow and waiting to see what the universe provided.
Let’s just say the universe surprised us. After initially reaching out to Shari, our new boss and the manager at Bay Point, early in the Spring you can imagine our surprise when she contacted us in late May. While our initial plan had been to finish the season in California and head here in the fall the negotiations ended with an offer too good to pass up and we said our sad goodbyes to new friends at Clios.
This latest plan puts down more roots than we have had in four years. For ten months a year, we will be working full-time here in Coos Bay before enjoying a 2-month hiatus from mid-January to mid-March to escape the winter rains and seek the sun. This coming season that translates to a 2nd Baja Amigo’s caravan down Baja. With a few changes and a now 30-day itinerary, we are eagerly looking forward to another trip down. This will also ensure time spent with our road family in Baja, an essential element in our happiness quota.
For winter 2021 talk has already turned to a few weeks initiating Dave & Anne to our favorite spots in SE Asia. This option is, of course, fully dependent upon the status of our sweet girl, Aspen. She is back to fully embracing life at the beach, her true happy place, and we have found a combination of meds, CBD oil, and turmeric paste that is keeping her status as good as we can expect. Time will tell how much time remains for our baby girl but for now, her giant smiles each day make us smile as well. (Val and Stephanie…purple Hedgehog and LambChop are still favorites:)
Whatever our plans develop into, we know ourselves well enough to realize no matter the job, we will not be happy being fully rooted in one location for a full 12-months per year. Our restless souls require we spread our wings regularly as well. It has been nearly five years since we spent a winter in Oregon and we readily admit the idea is daunting. Following an endless summer, or at the very least, the ability to change locations as the weather turned, has been a hallmark of our last few years.
During the roots portion of our year, Bay Point is certainly going to offer a unique experience featuring tiny houses, rental Airstreams, and the RV park along with an indoor swimming pool, event center, and activity rooms. With more phases to come, the next couple of years shall prove interesting in this stunning spot!
We are so extraordinarily grateful. Grateful we originally took the plunge to travel on a different path. Grateful for all of the experiences and friends we have met along the way. Grateful for this latest opportunity to do work we love all while being closer to friends and family. As we experiment with having roots and wings, we can only be excited for this next bend in the road.