This one is less of an etiquette issue than it is one of sheer stupidity.
My Dad is retired and works part-time at a campground. He loves it and he loves the campers-hearing their stories, making new friends. In fact, when he is on vacation he usually takes his own camper out to the campground for a few days of R & R (he’s there right now!). But, of course, for every great new friend or happy interaction he has, you just know there have to be a few kooks that come through. This one occurred a few years ago and still makes me chuckle.
We live in the hot, steamy, humid southeastern United States. It is not unusual for summertime temperatures to reach 100 degrees. There are days when you leave your house feeling fresh and clean after your morning shower, only to feel sweaty and sticky by the time you get to your car. As a result of these semitropical conditions, we have a very big problem with mosquitoes. We do have a mosquito abatement program; however, the effectiveness is limited. Every Avon Lady I know sells Skin-So-Soft practically by the gallon. It’s that bad.
So, imagine my Dad’s surprise one day when and irate woman came storming into the campground store, walked up to my Dad, and demanded to speak to the person “in charge.” Note that he described her as quite overdressed for a campground, with full make up, lots of jewelry, and clothing and footwear definitely not appropriate for hiking trails and fishing. He was the only one on duty at that moment, so that would be him. The woman went into a long rant about how terrible the mosquitoes were, she can’t enjoy anything because of them and she wants to know what Dad is going to do about it. He explained to her that it’s just the way it is and there’s not a whole lot that can be done about them, except use repellent and avoid going outside in the early evening (when they are at their worst).
Not good enough for this lady. She had never heard of such a thing. Didn’t he know this was her vacation and she doesn’t need to spend it being chewed up by bugs! Something needs to be done and done immediately! Apparently her rant was pretty impressive. She went on for quite some time, not letting Dad get a word in edgewise, all the while other customers would come into the store, see what’s going on, laugh and then leave. No matter what he said, Dad just could not convince this woman that the campground had no control over the mosquitoes. He finally asked her if she had ever been camping before. Unsurprisingly, she replied that she had not. All Dad could do is suggest to her that perhaps camping was not an appropriate activity for her. 0124-11
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