It was a cold conveyor line removing bad apples, bagging the good. The ground was hard, the Macintosh scented air in that damp warehouse sunk into my bones, but there is someone I will never forget; the woman with the duct taped sneakers. My heart felt so sad that she didn’t have the money to buy new ones. That moment my goal in life was to never have to tape up my sneaks. Numerous jobs, a BA and years later I find myself one paycheck away from taped up shoes, however I appreciate the job perks I’ve received along the way, that have built more character than any large sum in my savings.
It started with a vile of semen, yup that is no typo, friends. Holstein semen was given to me on a teenage birthday. Before the country rumors start flying, let me clarify this was to be used in my cow. I worked hard on my neighbors farm shoveling, you know what, feeding calves, and walking up a hill to round up the gentle ladies for milking time. There I spent time with one of my human heroes. He was a classic farmer, local accent, grass in mouth smile that warmed many a soul. His twinkle in his eye, long pauses during stories, and his hard work were very much treasured. My vulnerability may have started then. One afternoon he told me: “bring this rat home, your mother wants it.” so I did. I walked down the country road, stiff tail in bare hand, right into the garden and handed my Mom the dangling dead carcass.
I was a lifeguard, with the honor of saving three lives. I worked the dish line in college, and received occasional ketchup smiley faces on plates, from friends. I traveled through 43 states for 13 months as a volunteer audio engineer, entertaining veterans and thanking them personally for their service. Very rarely have I felt such gratification from any paying job. I worked for a production company, got my permit to drive semi trucks. I could drive those tanks forward like a champ, but never quite conquered the alley dock, silly cones. I was a substitute monitor engineer for a week, in a tour bus for a Grammy winner. My belly could never hang with the big dogs, that beautiful Prevost gave me bottom bunk motion sickness. I drove a 15 foot box truck through Manhattan to deliver gear, following 911 when dogs and cops stopped my heart as they searched the interior. I was a monitor engineer for six amazing Irish lads, who encouraged I sample Yuenglings at work. I was a travel agent and could study the World. I was a supervisor at an Aquarium where I used the boat shop facilities to build my own single rowing shell! I learned how to serve at high end parties with white gloves, while dancing in the back with fellow servers. I worked at a hotel that offered hotel discounts, and pool entrance.
Today I’m an airline ticketing/gate agent, and a ski instructor. My current situation allows me the opportunity to pursue two top passions in life; traveling and skiing. I can fly for free, free unlimited on our domestic flights, and just an International tax applied on other routes. This opportunity increases my world view, along with priceless travel experiences. On the hill I receive a free seasons pass, to play all winter with available clinics to improve my skills. Although years later I may be one paycheck away from taped ski boots, I find value in pursuing my heart guided life…