Well, I'm on a roll here, posting twice in one week! Unfortunately, it's mainly due to the fact I've come down with a massive case of tonsillitis and had to take the day off. I worked all week with it but when I woke up this morning I was just feeling too bad. The fact I had burned my chest badly again, got something in my eye, so it was swollen and matted up, and got my back acting up again from lifting that heavy steel just didn't help matters either. And it was going to rain and turn cold, which it did. I'm waiting on them to find the drawings for my next project so today would have been a sort of slow day anyway. I hate to sit down here out of town and not get paid but sometimes you just gotta look after yourself or you sure will get run down and injured.
I know from the above description it might sound as though I'm on death's door and I do feel like I've had the hell beat out of me. It's going to take me a few weeks to recover from this excursion when it's over. All of this has really opened my eyes to how radically I have changed my life since being laid off this last time and how differently other people live. It's not that I got soft from not working. I think the well project proves that! It is just a completely different type of life due to being so much in the city I guess. As I've mentioned before, I have tried to eat right while here, and I do for the most part. I buy partly from a local organic grocer and bring food from home but it's not the same always because I can't cook much. I get a lot of good natured teasing from the guys about my lunches and snacks and it is worlds apart from some of that stuff they eat! *shudder* They would die, I guess, if they saw how I eat at home, where I can cook! Now, I do try to cook several meals over the weekend and bring much of it with me to eat during the week but it doesn't last long and I end up eating out once or twice a week, sometimes more. I have to be careful to avoid the city water down here. It is putrid and has given my stomach hell since I've been here. I finally figured out what was doing it and strictly use bottled water, or bring my water in jugs but it was tough back when it was hot because you have to have cold water and they fill our water barrels with the city water.
The air here is awful also. There is a stench over everything as soon as you enter certain parts of town and it really gets to me. I'm so used to my fresh country air. Plus, for some unknown reason, it seems that 80-90% of the population smokes in this town. I have found it rare to go many places without smelling the stench of cigarette smoke and that stuff really bothers me. That and the fumes from welding mess my sinuses up and have caused the tonsil issue.
Well, I didn't mean for this to become a whiny post and I'm sorry if it sounds just like every other post I've done since being here. I have just been surprised at how much of a struggle this has been for me. Not the work but the cultural and social parts I guess. No one lives like I do. It's hard to find recycling facilities and fresh, natural food. Wal-Mart and smoky bars are the big spots to go! The ladies that work at the hotel where I'm staying hold me in curious regard and one has been brave enough to ask me a few questions about what I do. (Due to the hi-viz shirts we are required to wear we are all branded to the public as construction workers and many people avoid us.) From their attitude it seems that maybe they were never taught women could do anything but be secretaries or clean. God help if she ever asks me about how I live at home!
My superiors at work hold me in a curious regard also. They know I didn't ask to come here. They know I have not enslaved my self to a life of servitude (debt) and therefore don't have to work for them. They treat the guys like crap but they know they can only go so far with me or I'll tell them to cram it. And they know I will too. Interesting the extent of the freedom no debt gives you. I do my job and I do it well but I can't help but be a little smug about it and flaunt the fact they don't own me. LOL! Not much though. I still remember the company ours used to be and out of honor to the guys I tow the line, for the most part.
The bottom line is this job has served to reinforce the idea to me that this type of life is nowhere near what I want or will have. There are malls and shopping for anything you would want around here but it holds nothing for me. I admit I have bought a few nice pieces of clothing, on sale, because I got down to not having much in the way of nice things, but other than that, I just mostly stare at the windows and wonder how people can be so obsessed and excited over a new purse? A life of stifling, frustrating hard labor where you only get 2 days a week to do what you enjoy is out also. I want to enjoy every day. I used to enjoy this work; we all did. We talk about how fun the jobs used to be. Micromanagement, bureaucracy, disposable society and the death of common sense has killed all that. It has however, brought to life some images for art that I have had floating in my head for years that would never quite crystallize. They are very clear now. That has been very interesting and I am excited to get home for good to start producing these works. They will be unlike anything I've shown ya'll before.
So, it has been good and bad, as most of life is. I am making some money though and am actively searching now for the stove I want, as my main goal from this is to finish the kitchen. I should be ordering cabinets before too long also. If I get that and get to work with my fellas on a big project one last time then it will be worth it.