I know..the vents are few and far between. Just got caught up in a real twister and trying to keep myself from getting clobbered by all the bits and pieces flying about.
So...Times around these parts are feeling mighty grim, right about now. Slow downs, shut down, lay-offs, firings, words that have become common place in areas that rely on the "Patch" to keep them going. I honestly feel so sorry for folks who are getting the rug pulled out from under them, right now.Not a warm and fuzzy feeling, and I know there will be many that suffer big time, folks who have lived the good life, enjoying all the fun stuff, living, as my Mom used to say "High on the Hog". Do I fault them for ending up in a great big hole? Nope, not really!! See I understand how easy it is, I have watched how society often works. It's the keeping up with the Kardashian mentality, and it is difficult to protect oneself from this. Lets say, 2 couples, always hang out, one guy makes a small fortune, and decides he is going to buy a huge trailer, and head off camping...oops couple #2 don't have quite as much money, but..geez, what are they going to do when their buddies take off for fun times..best find a way to rack up a payment and pick yourself a nice shiny new trailer..now you can all go off together. Then comes the boat, then the snowmobile..you know, for winter fun..oh, yeah, then there are the parties, got to keep up with those, can't possibly sit at home, you might miss out on something lucrative..hey, it's all fun, right? Now Mr. #1, well, no skin off his a$$, he is loaded, but.....sooner or later the others are going to have to keep paying the piper, and if they run into a hiccough, the smelly stuff hits the fan real fast!!
Now..myself, well, this is not my first trip down the recession highway. It seems I always get myself into the fast lane, on this stretch. Yep, usually first in line.about the only place I tend to get up front in. This trip is one of the hardest to make, and although I know my way, I still keep hoping there is a detour I have missed in the past.
Way back in the olden days, I tried to outlast my first trip down recession road. It didn't bode well. We almost lost everything, even with both of us working. Hindsight taught me, we should have packed up a year or two sooner than we did, but...that was back in the days I still had some hope in my heart. Never quite got out of that slump, but, we managed to hold on, and trust me..it was NOT easy raising 3 kids, with next to nothing. Now the first was forestry, the second, was forestry, which brought us to the big boom of oil and gas. These beauties hit about 10 years apart, and we thought we had hit the big time with oil and gas. Well..here it is folks, 12 years later, and lo and behold, the yellow brick road has become ever so slick, but this time, I wasn't blindsided. I saw this coming a mile away. Hindsight wasn't going to bite me in the butt again...we jumped ship. Oh, we didn't get on another ship, from from it, we appear to be on a kayak, but, we are still floating, and we are not too far from shore, there is a good possibility we can make it to the dock..that is only because we have had a lot of practice. I can see the bigger boats taking on water right now, and riding pretty low, it is doubtful many have life jackets on board.
I read the unemployment numbers, but, reading the numbers and witnessing the actual facts, are two separate things. See, there are an awful lot of folks around these parts who are still employed, however..here is the kicker, they are listed as employees, but...they are not working!! So, the numbers are not really a true picture of what is happening here. You may get a pay day, but it sure isn't a full pay, you will be lucky to get a couple of days..but in the eyes of government, you are still working. In the eyes of the creditors, you are not paying your bills! There is a maximum to the amount of EI you get when you lose your job..it is not a percentage of $150,000 per year..LMAO, well..I suppose it is, but one I couldn't calculate. EI is not going to make a mortgage payment, an RV payment, utility payment, and food..Hah! What are you going to do? Sell your toys for less than you owe? That will get you a few moments peace, but, remember even if you do find a job, you have to try and make up for all that lost time..that can take a very long time, and trust me, you will struggle.
My past has caused me to become hardened. I am always watching for the first tug on the rug, guess you could say I am "gun shy". I am called cheap, I am a workaholic, I don't have a life, according to some, including myself. It is not because I don't want a life, besides work, it is because I know times occur when work is just not there, but bills remain. No matter that I live frugally, facts are, the shutdowns, and slow downs hurt me. I live a 12 hour drive away from my partner, because, he is lucky enough to have a job, and so am I. Huge payment on our parts, but, we are so close to shore now, this will be our last trip down this highway. Oh, I am not saying retirement is around the corner for both of us, but, when we manage to wipe the grease off our shoes from this trip, we will be able to meander down the dirt roads, and get off the beaten path.
Again, I feel sorry for those who are heading out on this trip for the first time, a tough wake-up call, and sadly, additions to alcohol issues, depression, and worse, suicide are the horrible effects of what a whole new generation of travelers are going to experience.
Job security is a fact for some in these parts, just the lucky ones, everyone else, best hang on tight, and take a look around, check what is really important to you, and focus on fighting to keep that..family and relationships are at the top of my list..what about you?