We woke this morning pretty late, about eight o'clock for me. I took my shower and got Stella up to start making her biscuits for breakfast. I went and found some of the guys that needed coffee and invited them to the trailer where I had made coffee outside.
We all soon went to the rally hall where there was a delicious potluck breakfast. We were honored with an assigned table for all of us, including my "adopted son" Bob Wurch who had sat down with us. Everyone had plenty to eat.
Sandy made a little speech introducing the new folks to the group and visitors; family members who were visiting with members. Damon McCollum from Camping World had come again, and had brought some door prizes which he gave out. He gave out the prizes by handing out playing cards. People with duplicate numbers would choose a number with the closest to the chosen number would win the prize. I won a set of antique fishing lures patio lights but tied with Bernest Currey. We both chose numbers but I won, but gave the prize to him. I didn't feel comfortable in accepting the prize but we don't use lights on our awning, so they wouldn't have been used. Sandy called Ken Wilson to the front to be introduced as a new Administrator for IRV2. Then I was called up and given a retirement cap with a "mood meter" on the front. It has a pointer that has several "moods" Work Sucks, Sleepy, Do It Yourself, So What?, Shy Worry?, and I'm hungry on it. She said that I should go around and visit with people and have them sign the cap as a remembrance of this weekend. It was a very nice thought and I will keep this cap and its memories forever.
I spent the remainder of the morning walking around and having people sign the cap and visiting. I spent a lot of time in the display unit that Damon had brought over from Camping World. It was a Bighorn 3600RE with the rear entertainment TV. There is a 42" Samsung flat screen TV on a bracket that raises up when the TV is turned on. I, as well as others, am amazed by the picture off the "batwing" antenna on the roof. On my TV, the picture is so good you can see the individual blades of grass on a golf course, and the makeup lines on the actresses.
I stayed inside the trailer for awhile, but came out to get a few more signatures on my cap. I went down to the rowdy group's trailers #100-104 and found that they were well on their way to having a very good time, thanks to several bottles of tequila. They were very well behaved at the dinner though.....
We all met at the Rayford Room at six o'clock for our catered meal. Sandy instructed me to have my family and guest Joe French of Camping World, sit at one of the round tables and everyone else sat at the regular tables. There were 115 people at the dinner, which surely bulged the rally room. They had to bring in the outside tables to get everyone seated. I was honored to have so many attend my retirement rally. When the meal was finished, she gave everyone a 30 minute break to get a drink, take care of personal business or walk their animal before returning for my retirement ceremony. It was very touching for everyone to give me recognition for my years of service as the Houston Area Leader. Ted and Donna, the Jolly Rogers Revue, put on a hilarious skit about Stella and I in our retirement times. It was the highlight of the night and everyone loved it. They must have put a lot of work into this skit. Don had made up a slide show, complete with music, and had included some pictures from the Christmas rally in Boerne, where Sandy had done a smaller retirement party for me. Some of the people that went to Boerne were not able to attend the rally this weekend, so this was a chance for me to tell them so long.
The group gave us a $300 gift certificate for Wal Mart, a day clock to hang in the trailer and a photo album with pictures and comments from friends. Harry and Judy made us a posterboard with good luck wishes spelled out in candy bars. It was real cute and probably took a lot of time to put together.
Sandy got very emotional when telling me goodbye as the area leader, and it was really nice. Sandy and the other area leaders will always mean a lot to me and I am honored to have been asked to lead this outstanding group of people.
After the ceremony, we all went back outside and hung out at some of the trailers, talking to our friends. we went to Don's trailer he had the expected "campfar" (campfire). I sat outside until about eleven o'clock when I went in and crashed with the boys in the trailer.
A great ending for my time as the Houston Area Leader.....