Strangers In Campsite
Well, I was just minding my own business in Cook Tent tonight, taking note of any tidbits Ryan, T.J. or Chief Peter were dropping (a mouse has to live on something, you know), and I saw the oddest thing. Three strangers were coming through Entrance Tent, and all the Discoverers greeted them cheerfully. I’m used to the normal strangers who come to campsite but don’t live here – Supervisors, for instance. But these weren’t Supervisors. Oh my tail, no. I suddenly wished I were one of those ladies, the Discoverers treated them so warmly. They all trooped into the cozy Chuck Tent, and Chief Peter served everyone Ryan’s delicious steaks and T.J.’s scalloped potatoes, gourmet salad and delectable cherry-coffee-bean-chocolate cake. The sheer amount of laughter that resonated from those tarp walls was tantalizing, and I scurried over to see what game they were playing. “Feel my wrath!” a voice intoned, and my whiskers quivered as someone else groaned. It might be safer for such a small mouse being as myself to curl up right here and just listen to the delightful guitar and harmonica sound waves alternately swirling, dashing and floating around me. Those Discoverers are quite the enthusiastic singers. Finally, out come the lady cooks and secretary. They turn and yell “Yum, yum, yum!” into Chuck Tent before walking away, still laughing.
Tip – Cook Tent Mouse
(as voiced through Miss Grace, Secretary)
Bob the Salamander
“I was totin’ my pack along the dusty Winnemucca road…”
Actually, I was just lying along the trail that more like muck than a road, when along came a big galoot and almost stepped on me. “Watch it big guy!! Hey, what are you doing?” I screamed.
I was hoisted some 48 inches off the ground and rudely pinched right behind my front legs. Oh no, this isn’t good. Meanwhile without even moving my legs the ground moved under me, and I headed up a hill faster than I’ve ever traveled before, not without some substantial pressure to my upper body.
As the ground moved under me I thought, I’ve got to make a break for it. So I wriggled my tail and all other parts not currently in the pincers hold. Suddenly I felt myself falling and, not having time to deploy my parachute, I plopped unceremoniously on the trail. “Now we’re talking,” says I.
“Oh no, that galoot might be scared of wrigglers, but he is definitely persistent,” I said as I again was hoisted off the ground and held in the pincers even tighter than before I was dropped.
After a little while I was dumped into a round house. I could hear the big galoot say, “Did you ever see anything like this?”
“Hey, check it out!” I heard as my round house door was opened and a whole bunch of small galoots peered in at me. It was a little unnerving because I hate being seen at all, other than by my salamander friends.
“What is he?” the galoots asked. One said, “A slimy salamander.”
Now that really made me mad. I roared as loudly as my lungs would allow, “I am a Jefferson’s Salamander, you dimwit! I don’t appreciate being compared to that sleazy, slimy cousin of mine.”
A few minutes later I was passed from pincers to pincers in a midsize group of galoots. Ugh, that’s gross, I thought. Their pincers were dry and sickly feeling and one of them made a loud noise and showered me with little drops of…not sure what it was, but something like rain, which I very much enjoy. Oh well, maybe I’ll survive after all.
“Ouch! What’s this? Hey folks! I’m back. Let me tell you about the dream I had last night – it was scary. But first let me find some damp leaves to crawl under to recuperate.”
Chief Kevin – Program Director