Greetings all! Or as they say in Oxford, greetings y’all! The Student Conservation Associations Visitor Survey Team in Mississippi is hard at work, sweating it out in the July sun, collecting data like veritable data collecting machines. Can you believe that we are one third of the way into our summer season? Well, the long dog days are still ahead, so the remaining months will seem even longer to make up for it.
Over the past two weeks, our three teams were out administering surveys for the Army Corps of Engineers at Arkabutla, Sardis, Enid, and Grenada Lake. Now, my experiences at work are limited to working with Lacey, and I have never encountered someone who enjoys giving surveys as much as she does. I mean, this is not a painful or unpleasant job by any means, but the satisfaction she derives from administering surveys is simply beyond me. So imagine her joy when one of our rec sites was hosting a family reunion and a class reunion at their picnic areas at the same time. I’ve never seen her so happy.
We also welcomed Boise’s own Mr. Alex Olsen, the master mind behind the SCA’s Army Corps program. Alex is the man who has made all this possible, and he took time off of his busy schedule to visit the various SCA teams throughout the South. While visiting, Mr. Olsen met with each member of the team to discuss how things are going and how they are doing. He also joined us at Frank and Marley’s for twenty five cent wing night. Now how can you beat a deal like that?
In an effort to continue a tradition that has apparently just started, Adam Bryant, freestyle champion of Germantown, MD, composed a rap for our community that will be sent to the next SCA team.
The Oxford team has taken field trips both natural and intellectual –
we spent a day at Arkabutla, picking up litter on their beautiful nature trails, covering eight miles in total. After that, we paid a visit to Rowan Oak, the Oxford mansion where Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winning author William Faulkner lived and wrote his acclaimed novels, such as A Fable and Absalom, Absalom!
When master chef Paul starts marinating a rack of ribs for twenty four hours and slow cooking them for over five, it can only mean it is time to celebrate, and what better way to celebrate Independence Day than with seasoned, tender, fall-off-the-bone ribs? Our neighbors graciously invited us over for the 4th, and gave us more salad, pasta salad, corn, venison, and more than we could eat. Not to mention hearing about the research Ms. Terry is doing for her forthcoming book on the Civil Rights movement in Mississippi.
And we topped it off with fireworks on the Ole’ Miss campus.
So next time you’re in Mississippi, follow Alex’s lead and pay a visit Josh, Adam, Paul, the newly-mohawked Tina, Lacey, and Joe.