OTR with M and R travel blog

Margie's cabbage

The green bananas finally turning

Coleslaw from Margie's cabbage

Four ships

Four ships

Four ships from viewpoint

Week 15 7/18-7/24


Let me give some examples of very poor customer etiquette and hopefully it will help anyone’s dealings with retail employees. DO NOT ask for a bag, box, etc. while the clerk is still ringing up your purchase. They will probably give you one when the transaction is completely finished. If you want the correct items in your bag and you want the correct change then shut the hell up until the clerk is finished. It irritates the hell out of us for someone to ask for a bag while you are still completing the transaction.

I actually had someone pick up a bracelet they bought and put it on and walk away carrying the second one. A few minutes later she comes back in the store asking for a box. I became apologetic, saying I was surprised that I didn’t give her one. Then I remembered her and I may have told her I would have given her one if she hadn’t put one of them on and walked away.

A man called me to the other end of the counter to ask how an item is made. As I got to him and began telling him, his ill-mannered daughter asked me a question about something else. I just kept looking at the man and completely ignored the idiot with no manners.

A woman called me to the other end of the counter just to tell me she wanted to buy a jade bracelet and jade earrings. These items are on a display with hooks. You take them off yourself. I wanted to tell her then take them off the display and bring them to the register. There was no reason for me to go down there.


A fellow bought a dreamcatcher and then started walking around. I put his purchase in a bag and just waited for him to come back and get it. I wasn’t going to follow him around to give it to him.

Another man expected me to give him an eight cent discount because he didn’t want to have to carry the change. When I handed him his 92 cents change he said, “You didn’t give me discount?” I told him I can’t give everyone a discount just because they don’t feel like carrying change. Then he walked off looking for someplace to put the 92 cents. I’m guessing he probably put it in the donation box in the museum. Now I guess he will expect another discount at the next place instead of just keeping his change so he can pay his full bill. Then while I was ringing up his purchase his inconsiderate spoiled wife starts asking me questions. Then she asked me what the totem poles were. I told her. Then it’s, “why do you have them.” How do you answer a stupid question like that?” That’s like asking a butcher why he has meat. Then she wants every item in a separate bag.

Then I find three dreamcatchers lying on the counter. Here is one very important lesson to learn. It is called “ZERO RESIDUAL PRESENCE.” It means after you leave an area there should be no evidence you were ever there. Put everything back exactly as it was before you got there. It amazes me how parents will tell their kids to put things back where they got them but when they go to a store they think it’s perfectly fine to stick things they had to look at anywhere that is convenient for them.

I had a man tell me something about obsidian knives. First of all obsidian is a volcanic glass. It is formed by molten rock being forced out of a volcano and when it cools very quickly it becomes a glass material. We have knives with obsidian as the blade material. This fellow tells me that glass knives are used in surgery because they case much less damage to the skin. A normal knife, no matter how sharp, damages several cells on each side of a cut. However, a glass knife blade can make a cut that only damages the one cell it goes through. This causes much quicker healing. I have a little trouble believing that he said a person demonstrating this actually cut himself and closed his hand on the cut for a few minutes and the healing had already visibly begun. This will warrant further research.

For dinner we had coleslaw made with Margie's very own cabbages. We have now had bananas for two weeks that are as green as the day we got them. I'm not sure they will ever be edible. When mom was in her 80s a woman tried to make a carpet cleaning appointment for her for the following year over the phone. Mom told her her age and said, "Honey, I don't even buy green bananas anymore." If mom waited for these bananas to get ripe she would have lived a lot longer. She had a hell of a sense of humor sometimes. It especially came out with telemarketers which she despised.


Today a woman was walking though the store having a facetime conversation with someone on her phone. She had the phone facing out, I presume so the other person could see what she was seeing, and of course she had it on speaker phone so everyone could hear and participate in her conversation. How can people think they are so important that everyone wants to hear their conversation?

I pay a lot of attention to what goes on in the store. Today I saw a woman carrying an item that was on display. Usually we substitute the display item for one in a box. As soon as I saw her I went to get one of what she was carrying except in a box. I took it to my co-worker at the register and told him it will all become clear in a few minutes. Then I told him, “Just like Radar used to say on “M A S H” wait for it.” Then I walked to the other end of the counter. Within a minute the woman went to the register with the item. Then I saw my co-worker start laughing and he told the woman he just happened to have one of those right here in a box.

Then a woman came to him with another like item but not the same one. As I started to go get one like it I told him the six digit number and he said yep. This happened a third time but I didn’t know the number of that one. So, he had to tell me but he still looked for me knowing I would already be heading to the cabinet where we store them.

Near the end of the day I was at the register when I heard a woman say, “Anyone working here,” more to her friends than to me. I was doing something so I didn’t respond right away. Then I heard her say it again and I started that way. As I got to her she said she knew she could not afford the item but asked how much it was. So, I very deliberately looked at the price tag that she could have easily done herself, instead of being so annoying, and told her the price. What do you know, she couldn’t afford it and most likely had no intention of buying it anyway and she left. Why did I have to waste my time on this? There is another lesson to be learned. When you are in a store that is trying to sell stuff, almost everything in it will have a price tag on it. LOOK FOR IT, before being made to look stupid by asking how much it is and having the price tag shown to you.

At about 5:45 a woman comes in and says, “No more entry for the day.” I said yes. Then she asks what time I close. I told her that I close the museum for entry at 5:15 so people can get though before I close the store. Then she has to ask what time I close the store. I said, “Anytime now.” To that she says, “Well I guess that was a hint.” I certainly hope so.

I found out at the end of the day that the owners will be gone for a week to 10 days. So, maybe the mice can play.


I finally managed to go take some pictures of the port when there are four ships docked. There should have been five but I could only see four.

I was supposed to stop at the store yesterday but I forgot until l was half way home. So, I went today. They had three packages of turkey bacon, which I hadn’t seen for a while. So, I scarfed up all three of them. They are about half the price of real bacon.


I’ve been told that one of the ships is lower class and today it proved itself. I saw a fellow coming out of the museum carrying one of our shopping bags in one hand and a six pack of beer in the other. He wasn’t walking down the street, he was actually going through the museum. You gotta wonder which one was the afterthought.

Margie and I went out to eat this evening. It’s being a once a week thing. We were going to go to another fish place that I’ve heard is pretty good. The only problem is that it is under a canopy basically outside and it was cool and breezy. So, instead we went to the Morning Wood Hotel that has a restaurant called the Station attached to it. I had a seafood pasta dish and Margie had the fish and chips. Up here when you get fish and chips it’s pretty much always halibut. My pasta dish would have been alright if it hadn’t had a lime flavor. I don’t know who decided to start using lime in so much stuff but I don’t like it. Margie’s fish and chips was not the best either one of us has had.


I’ve been wanting to go out to what is referred to as Dog Island now that the water is up and really flowing. There is a walking bridge at the campground that crosses a small stream before you go through some woods to get to Dog Island. Then you cross a field of big rocks to get to the river. I went today. This first stream is the one that we hear all the time from our RV. I always forget about it and wonder how we can hear the river so well. It’s definitely up and flowing since we got here in April and went out to see it.

I saw on Facebook last night that the Eagles were having a fundraiser crab boil today. Margie said it felt like a tomato soup and grilled cheese day. So, I figured it would be a good time for me to get some crab since she isn’t all that fond of it. I texted a co-worker to see if he wanted go and he did. it just so happens that he is a member of the Eagles. Later I was in the clubhouse when he came in to shower. While he was showering someone else came in and in the course of conversation he said he was told the crab boil was cancelled. I started checking and found out it was. Due to the rain they couldn’t get the fresh crab they had expected. So, here we were all cleaned up and nowhere to go. Well we went anyway. He decided that we should stop and get a drink at the Eagles anyway. On the way in he told me that people like to come there with him, because you have to be a member to buy drinks and I would not be able to buy any. So, he bought our drinks and I found out that they have tentatively rescheduled the crab boil for August 6th. Then we went to the Northern Lights where I had my favorite meal here yet. I had the same thing I had before which included two pieces of salmon, two pieces of halibut, and three big prawns with fries. Well I could have gotten spaghetti or something else I can’t remember as a side but fries just seemed right. It didn’t seem as good as the last time but it was still pretty good. My companion got the fish and chips which he gets here a lot. I didn’t finish my fries which he took to give his dog. The same guy who told me the crab boil was cancelled told me that a car had run up on the sidewalk and hit two guys sitting on a bench in front of the Red Onion Saloon. He said that both plate glass windows had gotten busted but the two guys on the bench just seemed to get minor injuries. I said it must have been terrorism. He said yeah ISIS has come to Skagway. Then he told me that all three people involved were in their 70s. This included the driver so he said drugs probably weren’t involved. I said well they may have been because at 70 maybe he forgot to take his. Anyway me and my companion drove by several times and I couldn’t see any damage at all. No broken windows, no broken boards in the sidewalk, and both benches still in place. The only thing I could see was a four by four holding up the overhang of the building next door appeared to have been recently replaced. There were three supports. Two were painted white and had trim on the bottom of them and the closest one to the Red Onion was unpainted and had no trim. My theory is that maybe someone was parking and hit that support and maybe the fellows on the bench somehow got hurt getting out of the way or the support fell on them. It probably wouldn’t have taken too long to get another four by four in place, but I seriously doubt they could’ve gotten the glass replaced that quick. Then we went down to Pullen pond and he showed me where he had seen someone catching some fish this week. We may go fishing there someday soon. Then we headed home. A couple of the Workampers went to Whitehorse today and brought us back a loaf of fresh made bread and a kohlrabi. In case you don’t know a kohlrabi looks a lot like a small cabbage and can be put in a salad or made into coleslaw.


Today we went shopping again. Margie had some more stuff she wanted to get. We got an ice cream cone. We went to another place that I found out has ice cream. They also rent scooters and book tours. Yeah, I don’t get the connection either but that’s not unusual here. The Starbucks also has a jewelry store in it. Margie fixed some amazing ribs for dinner. She used the convection oven and luckily they were done and we were eating when the power went out. After a bit we saw another camper go out and check his electric connection. So, we knew it wasn’t just us. The good thing about the RV is that when the shore power goes out the electric immediately switches to the inverter that develops 120 volt power from three 12 volt batteries. The only thing we wouldn’t have been able to power that way was the convection oven. All the lights switched over so we hardly noticed the change. The power was back on before we finished eating. We also have a generator which will power even more things including the convection oven and both air conditioners. Margie is still getting a lot of things from her garden. She’s getting carrots, cucumbers, and lettuce. She’s even gotten a couple of cabbages lately. They are a smaller variety. We’ve even had coleslaw made with her very own cabbages. After dinner I did the dishes and am now about to put another weeks blog to bed and online.

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