Saturday, February 05, 2011

It Has Happened Again

Well, it happens at some point during every volunteer assignment. One of us or the other (almost never both of us at the same time), gets to the point that we are sure that we could run the place better than it is being run; no one else has a clue about how to do their job correctly; we are the only ones who really know how to do it. That person frets and fumes. Hopefully, the other person keeps their mouth shut--not affirming the person who is unhappy but not supporting the full-time staff or other volunteers.

Eventually, that person works through whatever it is that set them off. To do that involves several mental exercises. First, we retired because we were tired of being the person in charge. If we don't want to be in charge, we have no excuse for criticizing the one who is in charge. Second, isn't there more than one way to do any job? Are the others getting it done, their way? Is the public happy with what they are doing? I'm afraid the answer to all of those questions is "yes."

This is the 12th time we have volunteered in state and national parks, fish and wildlife facilities and private campgrounds. We always seem to come away with the understanding that our personality may be fitted for short-term work in any of these places. However, we would be utter failures if required to hang in there and work in any of these places for years on end. Doing that takes a different outlook than ours. In addition, we are retired. Not only are we not the ultimate authority on how to do it; we don't have to be because we are responsible only for our small portion of the job, and only for a short period of time. That is our freedom and our joy.

I wonder, how many of the rest of you who are work campers experience the same reactions?

1 comment:

  1. Enjoyed your comment John. Here at work in Massachusetts planning our RV retirement/travel future (1.5 years away) and found your site.

    Thanks for posting and I look forward to catching up on your posts.

    I own and run a small converting company can relate to the above.