The week before I left vancouver was chalked full of excitement and glory. Well not so much excitement, mostly just glory.
Monday was my last day off, or the last day i had to slack off is more like it. I stayed up until 3 am or so as usual because that's what my sleeping pattern was adjusted to. The next morning i had to get up at 6:00 so I could be at labour ready by 7:00 to do orientation; they said if i get there at 7:00 they could do orientation and then i could go to work that day. So i hurry my ass to labour ready only to find out that they won't be doing orientation because their is only one person and she's dispatching calls, handing out applications, taking newcomers, and troubleshooting her computer. But apparently they will bypass the orientation process and allow me to work, provided i do orientation the following week. So i'm sitting there waiting to be dispatched for a couple hours (on a couple hours sleep) and at about 10:00 the other woman comes in and decides we can do orientation after all. So a couple hours later i'm all done orientation and ready to go off to work for labour ready. By this point it's already 12:30 and there's pretty much no point in waiting around, so i put my name on the 'on call' list and head home to get some more sleep. On my way home a young girl about my age approached me and asked "do you want some company?" I knew exactly what she meant by this, but I found it hard to believe because this girl could just as easily been some friend i grew up with and dropped out of school to become a prostitute. She wasn't even ugly for chrissake. So, just to be sure, I asked her "what kind of company". Of course this was responded with "well, do you like blowjobs."
I still feel bad for this girl, she didn't seem like she was so far off the tracks so to speak. I told her I wasn't interested and she asked me if i could spare any change, which i couldn't either.
It's the kind of situation where if i had a joint or something i probably would have smoked it with her. Prostitutes are only human after all. She was probably out there doing what she did so she could afford to smoke a joint of her own.
So I went home pondering her situation to myself, and when i got home I got a phone call from labour ready saying I can come get a work ticket and go do a job that night. Unfortunately I had about 3-4 hours sleep that night, was up from 6:00 am, didn't really eat at all that day (tried to, no time =/), had an exam the next day at 9:00 am, and the work ticket i just received was for 4:00 pm to 12:30 am. This was going to be a long night. It sure was too, when i arrived back home from getting my ticket, i had enough time to find out how to get to goldenboy and that my bus was leaving in 10 minutes. So i scrambled out the door after putting bandaids on the massive blisters on my heels caused by my shitty shitty steel toe boots (*shakes his fist at sam walton*). Goldenboy was easy work, but damn was it hot as hell in there. It's hilarious though. My job consisted of me standing at the top of a feeder, and pouring nuts into it. As the nuts went into the feeder they were deep fried and placed in bins for use in other machines. The other machines would do things like bag them for products like "mixed nuts" and "trail mix". The funny thing was that every so often the label that was being put on the product would change companies. The product wouldn't change, but the label itself would. For example, presidents choice trail mix and golden boy trail mix is exactly the same product with a different label. The same goes for the peanut butter. I don't recall all the labels i saw, but i know i saw several.
So after a long 8 hours of work, my night finally ended and i went home. I arrived at my house around 2:00 am and didn't get to sleep until almost 3:00 am. I got up 4 hours later and went to my exam. I got to my exam at 9:30 (because i didn't realize how infrequently the fraser bus ran, nor did i realize exactly how far out fraser south hill is.). Regardless of my untardy arrival, i immediately began scratching away at what would soon reveal itself to be my gateway into the world of post secondary education. Though I arrived half an hour late, i still finished my exam with about 10-15 minutes to spare, and that includes looking it over several times, and finishing the multiple choice section that i initially skipped thinking i wouldn't have time to complete it. The topics could not have been easier. Examples of personification found in a poem about twisting, meandering, curls of mist. Examples of symbolism found in a story about a pair of shoes that a child must have for himself, for they are made of marshmellows and springs and puppy dogs tails. Finally, an original composition (another essay essentially, except i can use i/me/we/you/any form of narration). The topic of the original composition was "how everyday activities or experiences can bring joy."
I think they just gave this exam away. They could have just been like "here's a couple sheets of paper, if you can fill them with words, you pass."
I can't even find out what i got until i get back to vancouver, because i don't know my PEN number. Oh well.
I went to bed that night at about 7:30 pm or so. The next morning I woke up and it was 4:55. I turned off my alarm which was set for 5:15 and decided i was just going to sleep in today and forget all about labour ready. 10 minutes later i was still wide awake, so i decided to get up and make some money. I walked down to labour ready and got a job with them within 10 seconds of walking in the door. I had to bring someone with me who didn't know really how to get there, so we went together and found out the construction site we'd be working on was actually a house. So we found the place and went back to starbucks cuz we were an hour early. I got some coffee and on the way back to the site my partner says to me "I sure like how it's not really cold in the mornings here in vancouver." To me this sounded about as out of town as i was, so i asked him "where are you from?" and of course he responded with "winnipeg". So, we rejoiced over having been from the same town and went off to work digging holes all day. That wasn't so bad. Easy tedious labourous work. The site foreman said later that day that the company itself is looking for full time workers to do this kind of stuff because labour ready sends them people like 40 year old women and 50 year old men who can't possibly be doing that labourous work all day long (not all 40/50 year olds, i meant the ones they chose in particular.)
So when i head back to vancouver, there's a good chance i'll be working for a construction company, learning how to build houses. Mmmm apprentice work.
I did that for a couple days and saved up enough money so i could leave for winnipeg the following week. Really i should have stuck with it a few more days, but I'm here, alive and well to tell my story so it can't be all that bad. My aunt here wants her computer before she goes to work, so i'll continue the hitch hiking portion of my journey when I come back and am not feeling so lazy anymore.