Saturday, July 22, 2006
When we moved here there were two things that stood in the way of us staying: finding work and finding a place to live. Pretty essential stuff and it has not come easily. I am currently on Employment Insurance and received a nasty call from a government employee three weeks after we got here. We were dealing with the horror that is our septic pump and hadn't determined if we could actually stay, and if we did stay where we would live and thus where we would look for work. The fellow who called me was not impressed and made me feel like we had made a mistake moving here. We decided to look for work in and around Humboldt and hope that we could also find a home in the same area. We both have B.F.A. degrees, which are worthless as far as gainful employment is concerned (a situation that wasn't much better in Vancouver). We also only have one vehicle and Tyler is the only one who knows how to drive. This means we must find work with similar hours in the same location. Not easy. We first tried a beekeepers, which was not nearly as romantic as it sounds. Next we both applied to a company that manufactures highway trailers. It took us almost an hour to drive to the factory location. We were pretty much out of gas when we arrived and there wasn't a gas station in sight. We were both taken on separate tours. The factory was huge and noisy and one of the first things I noticed was a sign that read "28 days since the last accident". I was told I would be working in the metal fabrication department. Upon inspection all I saw were burly men stationed at huge frightening machines that would "take your finger right off". After the tour I had to complete a test and do an interview. During the interview I was told that they were concerned that the heavy lifting involved in metal fabrication might be too challenging for me and that the paint department might be better, "you aren't sensitive to toxins are you?" Hell no, I love toxins! Tyler went through the same routine as I did in a separate room. He was told he would be placed in the finishing department, which included tasks like putting on decals and mud flaps. It appeared to be the most laid back department in the factory. I was jealous. I left determined to find another solution (oh, and we made it to a gas station two towns away). And that solution was...self employment! Yeah, that's it! Tyler and I had noticed a storefront for sale on Main Street in Bruno. We had a look inside, the building includes living quarters behind the store, all of it on the market for $6500. We're currently looking into buying it and I have been accepted into a Self Employment Program through Employment Insurance. This was NOT what we were expecting...we wanted to live in the country. However Bruno is a pleasant little town and if all goes well we can move to the country later on. What business am I going to employ myself in? Stay tuned. Tyler accepted the factory job and he actually doesn't mind it, except he has to get up at 4am in order to get there on time (they also offered him a job in the paint dept. for a higher wage but he turned it down, the finishing dept. is definitely a better place to work in). So that's that. The photo above is of one of the trailers Tyler helps to build.
Last weekend Tyler and I chaperoned a group of students from Beijing on a trip to Saskatoon. They are all staying in Bruno at the Prairie Ursuline Centre for two weeks and range in age from 14-18. They were amazed at all the space and rolling fields of canola. The boys were disappointed that there weren't more girls living in Bruno, especially blonde-haired blue-eyed ones. We went to Wanuskewin Heritage Park where some of them enjoyed a lesson in traditional first nations hoop dancing.
Thursday, July 13, 2006
A little bird has built a nest in a hole on the outside of the house (looks like it was meant for a power meter). When we make noise in that part of the house the mother jumps onto a nearby branch in front of the window and starts chirping away defending her babies.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
There was a parade through Humboldt on June 30th. Humboldt has a population of about 5500 people. Bruno is much smaller (maybe 600 people)and Dana smaller still. Humboldt is where we often go to buy groceries and to use the wireless internet connection at Mr. Sub (where I am sitting right now).
Recently we ended up taking our garbage to the dump in Humboldt since the one in Bruno is only open two days a week and we keep missing it. In Humboldt you throw your garbage directly into a landfill instead of a dumpster. It's a pretty sad site. Before moving here I had only visited a dump once, it certainly makes me more conscious (and more disgusted) about the amount of garbage people produce, myself included. It also makes me want to order biodegradable garbage bags. I've been looking into the BioBag.