My sister decided to take advantage of Disney's "Give a Day, Get a Free Disney Day" promotion, and after much talk about how much fun we would have if we went to Disney World together, managed to convince me to sign up to volunteer. Laura got a gig doling out soup at a homeless shelter in Tallahassee; my activity was a lot less exciting.
I think I was one of the last people in the U.S. to sign up for this promotion, because as I scrolled through the list of volunteer opportunities, all the slots had been filled. There was nothing in Tampa or even in Hillsborough County, and the few opportunities that were still left that were even remotely close to where I live were snatched up in the amount of time it took for me to click on the "More Information" button. So, knowing that time was running out, I decided to just sign up for the next available opportunity, regardless of what it was. It turned out to be in Sarasota with a rescue dog group called Canine Castaways, so I signed up for it, thinking I would be playing with puppies all day. When I got my confirmation email, disappointment came a creepin' in--the activity I signed up for was to hold a sign outside of Petsmart notifying passersby that dogs were up for adoption. For three whole hours. On a Saturday. How incredibly mind-numbing. We also had to make our own signs.
Now, I'm not an arteest. I'm a fairly decent writer, and my photography skills are passable, but my ability to draw and paint never progressed past the second grade. So when I got home Friday night and got out all my sign-making supplies, I stood there for a minute or two wondering what the hell I should do.
Tools of the trade: Off-brand crayons, a white poster, and Dora the Explorer markers. Que bueno!
The Dora the Explorer markers even did double duty! Not only could you indulge in your creativity, you learned a little Spanish while doing it! Purple=morado!
Green=verde! Comprende? I sure did! My Spanish grew by leaps and bounds! Thanks, Dora!
I knew the first order of business was to come up with some sort of snazzy tagline, one that would maybe make people actually read my sign. Since I was pretty sure my first choice, Don't be a bitch! Adopt one instead! wouldn't go over well with Canine Castaways or Petsmart personnel, I ended up going with, Make a new best friend. Adopt a dog 2-day! (I ran out of room to spell out today and decided to use some of that IM short-hand the kids are so crazy about these days. LOL!) After about an hour of coloring, I ended up with the finished product:
Yes, sad to say, that took me an hour. Of course, I did stop periodically to send my sister silly picture messages documenting my progress. And, true to form, it looked like a second-grader created it. Actually, if you'll notice in the block lettering, I did use a technique employed by artistically-savvy second-graders everywhere: marker on the outside, crayon on the inside. Creative and classy!
Saturday was my volunteer day. Other than a little disorganization with the check-in process at the beginning, and a sunburn I ended up taking home with me, my sign-holding duties went off without a hitch. I'm glad I had the foresight to bring my iPod with me, though; holding a sign for three hours with nothing to keep me company but my thoughts and the sounds of cars and people going by would have driven me insane. But as boring a volunteer task as it was, it was for a good cause--sending rescue dogs to good homes--and I ended up with a free day at Disney World. Not bad for a three-hour stint.