The next day we had a chance to go with the Trailblazers, a group of high school students that work in the park over the summer cleaning up the park sites, specifically in the Navy Yard. This group of young men and women were very hard workers as well as able to make some fun out of the tough labor they complete. It was great to work with them and helped give Jeff and I another perspective of the park; we will no longer take for granted the view of a weed-less lot! We also joined in their end of the day review session. After the end of each day, everyone sits in a circle and does the rose, the bud, and the thorn. The rose is one thing they enjoyed, the bud is something they are looking forward to, and the thorn is something they disliked about the day. Something as simple as this was a great way to recap the day and provide discussion and a sense of bonding between those involved.
Jeff and I also got the chance to go to Spectacle Island, one of 34 of Boston Harbor Islands and Peninsulas. Who says there is no wild life in Boston? The island was created by a glacier till, which was better described to us as "a glacier pooping". The island was then used as a place to store garbage. They later expanded and built up the island with the dirt excavated from the Big Dig tunnels in Boston. The island is now open to the public and tours are offered on the island as well as on kayaks. It is a beautiful place to use as a get-away from the every day hustle and bustle of downtown Boston.
Jeff and I took part in the taser refresher with one of the seasonal rangers, Dan Hall. The instructor went through the power-point that reviews the basic functions and uses of the taser. After reviewing the power-point and taking a short quiz, we were able to witness Hall complete his two practice rounds with the taser. He was to shoot one cartridge and then step back, reload, and then fire again. Unfortunately there were not enough cartridges for Jeff and I to fire so we had to settle for just watching. Witnessing the practice fires alone were enough to deter us from wanting to mess with any officer threatening to use it! It is just a shame that more criminals do not feel the same.
Later on in the week, we spent time with Administration. We learned that Admin basically deals with everything. They typically are the over-seers of most dealings within the park. They also help new employees fill out the necessary paperwork upon being hired. Another one of their tasks is to maintain and keep track of the donation boxes that the park has placed in various sites throughout the park. We have boxes in two of the Visitor Center's, on the USS Cassin Young, and at the Bunker Hill Monument and Museum.
This past week has been informative and obviously fun even when dealing with the heat! Jeff and I cannot believe that there are only 3 weeks left in our time here. We will continue to soak up as much information and experiences as possible! We hope everyone else is doing the same!
ProRangers Jeff Parente and Erin Langeheine