Monday, May 30 was not only Memorial Day, but also the first shower day since arriving at the park six days ago. By day three, dirt was no longer something I tried to avoid. Being filthy was inevitable and I attempted to treat the dirt on my skin as an extra protective layer. In the quarry, I began sacrificing cleanliness for comfort, leaning my head on the rock wall or laying on the dirt floor if it meant a more comfortable position to dig. Early in the morning on Memorial day, we loaded the two trucks with the empty water containers and headed towards the headquarters of the national park, where the showers were located.
At headquarters, we first got breakfast at the diner. It was ever so satisfying to have eggs once again. Afterwards, we set our stuff in the lounge, which had a television and was where the employees at the park would hang out during their down time. The showers were public and shabby, but once I stepped under the warm water, it didn't matter where I was. I could feel myself shedding the layer of dirt and sweat. This was when I realized that I might have never been so dirty in my life before.
In the evening, the employees at the park were having a barbecue and invited our entire group. It was great meeting some of the people who worked at the park. I had a lot of respect for these people who willingly left civilization and technology to come out and contribute to the preservation of the national park.