Today’s guest post comes from Anna.
I am not a wilderness camper, nor am I a fisherwoman. While I am a fan of the great outdoors, I prefer running water, a flush toilet, a bit of electricity and a lack of fish guts while I am on vacation. Call me a wimp, but there it is. I have been to the BWCA, I have piloted a canoe, I have even shot a rifle (once) – but it just doesn’t suit me. I can take the bugs, it’s the lumpy ground for a mattress I can live without.
Last year, on a bit of a whim, Daughter, Mom and I made use of a Memorial Day weekend deal at one of the Big Resorts in the Brainerd Lakes area. An opportunity to be in the great outdoors, but I could sleep on a real mattress and we could visit with my mom’s sister who lives nearby. We returned this year with the added knowledge that the free breakfast was plentiful, there would likely be baby ducks to feed (25 cents for a bag of corn in the marina), an indoor pool if it rained, and all the wax worms a kid could drown in an effort to land a sunfish from one of the docks (Aunt would take care of removing anything Daughter might catch and throw it back – so no fish guts for me – yay!).
When you choose a resort over camping, you are choosing the amenities: swimming pool, golf course, access to a lake for water-related activities. Our resort also sets up events throughout the weekend including a parade (complete with marching band), carnival games, pontoon and wagon rides, bonfires, even a movie on the beach (weather permitting). Our resort also has a staffer we’ll call Jake (not his real name).
Jake ‘s domain at the Big Resort is the dining room. Every morning over the summer Jake is up at a crazy hour, giving up late nights with his pals, so he can bring coffee to people like me while we over-indulge at the breakfast buffet (I am a “both-and” kinda gal, especially if waffles are involved). He also is the bringer of Frooty Loops (as he calls them), delivering joy to 8-year-old girls in the form of colorful cereal. Last year by morning #2 he had ascertained that Daughter preferred Fruit Loops to anything else on the breakfast buffet. When they were not on the buffet on the third day, he went off in search of the brightly colored Os for my daughter as soon as he saw her dismay at their absence; before we could even ask, he was off to the kitchen.
This year when we saw him at the Friday night welcome dinner (what was he doing working at night?), he stopped to chat, asked how the year had been, and ensured Daughter they still had Frooty Loops on the menu. Jake had a bowl ready for her by the time we were shown to our breakfast table the next morning, even though we were seated in someone else’s section. He brought her Frooty Loops every morning we were there.
We will likely go back again next year. Daughter might catch a sunny or two. We will likely go on a pontoon ride and a wagon ride and rent a pedal boat again. Jake may or may not be there. He graduated from the local community college this spring and there is a chance he will decide to move before next Memorial Day weekend. Daughter is crushed. Who will bring her Frooty Loops?
Someone will, it just may not be Jake.
What makes a vacation ”just right” for you?