Jasper, the psychic, trailer-park gypsy

This post is sponsored by eBay.trailerparkgypsy

In college I took so many creative writing classes that I got a minor in English. This was completely by accident and not planned at all. Somehow I took one class and then next thing I know I was buddies with everyone and I kept taking more.  It was a fun bunch of people to hang out with and the class was a hoot.  Then when I was about to graduate, my advisor said, Why don’t you take a grammar course (which I was horrible at, no surprise there) and a literature class (Japanese Literature – it was awesome) and you’ll get a minor in English.  So I did. And now to this day I can boast that I have a minor in English.

So it’s sort of a niggling thing that I don’t write fiction. I loved doing it so much in college, why can’t I be the next JK Rowling or Stephanie Meyer or at my worst, maybe I could write porn under a surname and make zillions of zillions of dollars like the fifty-shades lady.

I’ll probably never do any of the above, most of all the last because, ew. And second of all, I love love love to write descriptions all day long but when it comes to dialogue and a plot, I come up floundering. In fact, now that I think about it, all I ever wrote in my creative writing classes was a creative take on my real life. Kinda like this blog.

I digress. What I was trying to get to was that I have a friend who has been challenging me to write fiction. In fact, I even made up a character for her and together we were going to write chapters, trading them back and forth. To get my creative juices flowing I started a collection on ebay with all the things I thought my character, Jasper, would have or wear. It was a lot of fun. I recommend it for anyone needing help visualizing their character. I think I secretly wish I was a tv stylist with an unlimited budget. I could totally get down with buying things in character.

Without further ado, here is my story. But wait, I do have some ados. I need to preface this story by saying that this character came out of my imagination completely on her own and does not reflect anything from my real life. All my relatives should know that I am not psychic nor do I read tarot cards and I do not make out with boys in mobile homes. If any of that might offend you then perhaps this story is not suitable for you. Click away while you still can!

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Family and Camping and Raspberry Picking, Oh My!

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Bug starts school late this year which is such a blessing in disguise. While I yearn for the long productive work hours, I’m thankful we’re getting more time to squeeze in some summer fun before the back-to-school grind starts up again. It’s been a tug-a-war on my heart trying to fit in work hours and play hours while time rushes past me. I feel like I’m going to wake up tomorrow and I’ll be eighty. Life, please slow down! I want to enjoy you!

My parents kidnapped Bug and I for a few days. My car needs some work and I’m trying not to drive it so they picked us up and we headed off to the sticks. It felt good to just let go and be a prisoner to someone else’s schedule for a change. The sticks always feels like home deep down.

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We drove up to the hills (Oak Glen) to go camping in my parents’ cute little mini trailer that they recently purchased after selling my Grandpa’s house (that used to be my house). While I’m sad to say goodbye to that old mobile home in that old crazy neighborhood that I’m so fond of… the wonderful backyard and the walls that kept me safe and sound for a year, I’m glad that the money went to such a great recreational vehicle.

What’s a recreational vehicle, asks Bug? It’s a vehicle for fun, I say!

And boy was it. It’s super small and cramped but it has  three beds (a bunk bed and a table that turns into a double), a kitchen and full bathroom inside. It even has a working shower!  We call it glamping when we go camping in it because it is so far from roughing it.

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We stayed in this old resort that reminds me of some place Baby might stay in the movie, Dirty Dancing. It had a huge clubhouse and two pools, a miniature golf area and even an old dank tavern, an old rusty statue of Yogi Bear and a grotto cave with a pool that had been filled in with cement. Everything was run down and looked like it had been ridden hard and put away wet.

We wandered around amongst the ghosts of better times, imagining all the people who used to play there.  Everything was deserted because we were there before their busy tourist season and by the looks of their decor, the 80’s might have been their peak. We had the whole place to ourselves, which was awesome. Well, until I wanted a cup of coffee. Then I was kind of bummed that everything was closed. But that was okay because I had packed our French press of course!

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Long live glamping! I even got some work done. Not nearly enough of course—the story of my life.

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The next day we visited Riley Farms, an old favorite of ours. Bug didn’t remember the last time we’d been there. It was fresh all over again.

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Bethany and her family drove up to meet us and then we went raspberry picking! We LOVE raspberries. It was the end of the season and there were so many berries. Half of them were dried up right on the branch. It almost made me wonder if they’d taste like those freeze-dried raspberries we buy from Trader Joe’s and put in our cereal. I was too afraid to try them. We just picked and picked and picked the ripe ones.
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We couldn’t taste them as we picked unfortunately because they said they were sprayed with something organic, whatever that might be…

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Raspberry picking is hard work when it’s a hundred degrees out. We were a sweaty bunch. But it was worth it. The skies there are always so big and blue and amazing. The day before a summer storm had blown through and it had misted all day. We sure wished we’d picked that day to pick berries on instead of this bright sunny one. It was hot, hot, HOT.

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But still worth it. This farm is so beautiful. I bet it would be amazing for weddings and events.

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Then we drove back down the hill and refreshed ourselves with Starbucks (of course!). There is nothing like a cold air-conditioned Starbucks and an iced latte on a hot hot day. Phew!

I feel like we got our summer’s worth out of that trip. My kid isn’t going to go back to school and write essays about how she spent her whole summer cooped up inside watching Netflix while her mom worked. So I feel good about that. Unfortunately, now I’m even more behind but them’s the breaks!

Back to the grind!