Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Do you ever play the game, "Where was I one year ago?" This week during an early morning walk, I started thinking about various summer jobs I've held over the years. Kind of a fun year book of experiences:

2008: WECU
New Accounts / Loan Officer (currently in training!)

2007: Check 'n Go
Most memorable that summer was the 80 degree weather when the AC broke. It finally got fixed once the heat wave was over. Without ventilation, the nail salon next door made my office smell like acetone and alcohol. I got to generate debt AND work in miserable conditions!

2006: Rader Farms
As administrative assistant, during 12 to 14 hour days, I scheduled a teenage work-force for a hot, fast-paced raspberry harvest. Phoning hundreds of adolescents daily for summer work can be incredibly exhausting. Good thing my co-workers were so awesome. Three cheers for 14 year-olds developing a work ethic.

2005: African Children’s Choir
While completing my second year touring with the choir, we were making our trek across Canada in ‘06. The kids performed four nights a week in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario that summer. Beautiful country! Our host families were so gracious. Several families stand out as going above and beyond when it came to accommodating Choir #25 (24 children from Uganda), the adult chaperones (from the US, Canada, UK, and Uganda) and our crazy schedules.


Me with a few of my girls
Life on a bus!!!

2004: African Children’s Choir
That first summer on the road, we spent the month of July in southeast Alaska. I expected snow, but it was in the 80s most of the time. And on top of that, the sun never went down. I have fond memories of The Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show in Ketchikan, visiting Glacier Gardens in Juneau, the Anchorage zoo, and beautiful small-town Haines.

July 14, 2004

2003: Catholic Community Services
I was an in-home care assistant for two clients in Whatcom County. Service professions require a lot of patience and perseverance. I learned a lot and will never forget the blind date set up (and chaperoned) by my 94 year-old client.

Also in 2003: Haggen
Let’s hear it for entry-level positions! At the ripe old age of 21, I was collecting carts in the parking lot, cleaning spills and bagging groceries along-side 16 year olds. I think it weirded them out more than it did me. I miss wearing an apron everyday.

2002: Birch Bay State Park
A whole summer spent cleaning campground toilets and picking up drunken picnic remains was NOT what I had in mind when I applied for the Washington State Parks Department. That job required a lot of humility. I felt tough driving the park rangers’ one-ton truck, though. I was usually stuck with the maintenance vehicle: a John Deere Gator.

2001: Toyo Eiwa English Language Institute
I lived in the dorms at WWU with female Japanese university students while they attended intensive English courses and experienced Bellingham culture. No, that’s not an oxymoron.

(can you find me in this picture?)

Rock Climbing at Larrabee

1998 - 2000: Whatcom County Library System
I miss my home away from home. I still feel most comforted when surrounded by shelves of books. Plus, who can ever get enough of the Dewey decimal system? I can still quote the barcode off my very first library card. I’m that much of a nerd.

1997: Dun-Rite Cleaning Services
My first "real" job. I cleaned a credit union three nights a week. Who knew I’d be working for one 11 years later? I can still vacuum a mean streak.

1995-1996: Gardening Engineer
Really, I just pulled weeds for a neighbor. But I did a dang good job. I learned a lot about flowers, too. When the neighbor’s garden got too crowded, I would bring home a few starter plants on my bicycle. The scent of honeysuckle, columbine, delphiniums and snapdragons still remind me of Mr. and Mrs. Vineyard. They were good to me.

What was your favorite summer job?

1 comment:

  1. Oooooh.. good idea! I'm going to get nostalgic and do the same thing!

    ReplyDelete