Halloween!

Finally, Halloween, the night has come, and none to soon as I went all out getting the decorations all up at my work. There were a couple little hick-ups, but in all tonight should be pretty good. My costume did not work as I planed, and I decided not to go out tonight. But we had fun at my work, so that makes up for staying home to night.

I decided not to go all out on the candy at the work gathering. I am staying completely away from any candy today. I was tempted, let me tell you, but I resisted. There were plenty of opportunities, and some were very tempting, but I resisted to the very end. No candy–period. And I took none home with me, just to let you know.

My costume was a complete failure. I decided to go with something that I could use at work, and still be completely safe while in it. The problem was, I had some prosthetics that I could glue onto my head–fake rubber spikes. They look real, but are very light; however, you needed this special glue that is safe to wear on your skin. The glue was old, and no longer had enough “stick” to hold the rubber spikes to my skin. So there went that idea.

I set up most of the Halloween decorations up at work a couple a weeks ago. I started small, a few rubber bats and some plastic skulls, then bought some lights and added things like rubber bugs and other props. At first no one really seemed to notice-or at least I heard nothing. But then a few people thanked me for doing it, so all was good. But I wish I could have done more–hard to do when you also have a job to do. I made the time, but shopping on my own time was harder–I just did not have a lot of my own time that I wanted. It was a challenge to go as far as did.

Almost everyone had training to do today, so everyone was scheduled to stay in the building. This made it possible to have a little mini Halloween party. Towards the end of the day, everyone was having a good time. Most stayed afterwards, passed their quitting time, enjoying the gathering. I resisted the temptation of candy and soda-pop, I gotta watch my figure.

Tonight, I am taking it easy. I closed my window blinds, and will probably watch a movie later. I also need some good sleep too–these last two days meant I had to do my Month-End Reports and Audits, and handing in a pile of paperwork with it that is all normal for the end of each month. All part of the job, but it makes for a little bit of stress, cramming everything in on the last day, and making sure everything is right, but all worth it in the end.

Halloween is So Close!

Well, October seems to be flying by quickly for me. One moment it was October 15, then now it is October 28, where did the time go? But fear not, it was all good times. Remember I bought a newer car, and passed my three month review with my employer, and straightened out my financial issues that have been festering for the last six months. I would say, it is has been a pretty good month for me. But best of all, Halloween is fast upon us.

I am sitting here, steaming hot tea in one hand, and keyboard under my other, deciding what would be a good scary story to tell that would be fit for Halloween. Not much comes to mind. Actually, I got nothing? But it is Saturday morning, and the day is young, so something will pop up–I am sure.

Well, anyway, the neighbourhood is very quiet. I think it has something to do with some of the guys who live next door getting their “Government Cheques” yesterday, and they are currently away “taking care of business.” So everything is still in bed, or away–it is kind of nice to have the peace and quiet. I like it.

It is currently overcast, with foggy patches over head. It seems kind of cool outside to, but I have not been outside to confirm. It is hard to tell if the Sun will make an appearance today, or not. Terrace and Thornhill do not disappoint with weather surprises this time of year. My weather icon on my Desktop says it is only 1C, while my outside thermometer says it is 4C. Who to believe?

I am not sure if I will go to any Halloween parties this weekend. We have some events at my work on Halloween day, but that is it as far as I can tell right now. Who knows, something might come up at the spur of the moment that will change the course of the weekend–I am sure of it! For now, this weekend is devoted to cleaning and organization. It looks like I will be in this place for another six months, so I might as well unpack more of my moving boxes that I brought up from the Lower Mainland with me from my last move.

Here is, to a nice and quiet morning. Cheers!

PS

The Sun just popped out from behind Copper Mountain. The day is looking more and more awesome by the minute! I am not out singing in the streets of Thornhill just yet, I might pass on that, but I am taking notice. 🙂

Ten More Days, And It Is Snowing!

First of all, it is snowing here in Thornhill, BC. It is coming down with the rain, though I do not think it will stay, they are the nice thick fluffy snowflake, just enough to stick to the wind shield of your car. All the parked vehicles have that ominous coating of slushy goodness on them, but I highly doubt it will stay. So, with the snow, comes ten more days until Halloween! Could it be a white Halloween here in the Skeena Valley?

I think I am going to go simple this Halloween with my costume being it will be at work. I have to think of safety and whether I can work in it, as prime factors. So, I might have some simple prosthetics with fake blood, and just wear my regular work cloths for the event. Keep everything simple. But I am excited!

I just hope it does not snow to hard on that day. The bad weather came early this year. Wow! We are on our fourth nasty storm of the season already, and they say more is to come yet for October.

All Eyes Looking

The quest for the vehicle continues. Right now, it is deciding whether to go with what the Bank has offered me, or go with what the dealership can do. But for now, I am still looking. I have already lost two great deals becuase my Bank took so long drawing up the paperwork, and I fear I might loose another becuase these things take so long to do up here–I just got approval, but at a lot less than what I need for around here. But at least I have options, so I decided to give the other side of the street a look, in other words, I might skip the Bank altogether and just go with dealer financing instead.

I totally understand, or at least I think I do, the inner workings of what buying a car is all about. Each dealership seems to have slight variations on selling vehicles. Some include the sales tax and dealership fees, while others do not. Some have “special buys” with tax included, while other “special buys” come with packages attached that usually cost extra money. One dealership that I went to told me that all of their cars have no tax included on the sticker price, or other fees attached. So, going car shopping means you are confronted with a sale person who wants the deal to go their way, so you have no idea what is in fact a good deal or not, but they make it sound so good that you are getting a break. The question is, are you getting a break?

So I think I found a car that will get me by for now. I am going to go with the dealership financing instead of the Bank pre-approved loan, just becuase it is fast for everyone. Sure, my Bank will loose their cut, but they still have me as a customer. All I want is a car, albeit a used one, but still new enough that I can sell it again, and go for something I really want later on when build my credit score, or buy it out-right.

I had no idea that buying through a dealership up here in Terrace was a pain. Now I see why so many choose to save first, then buy out-right. It makes sense now. Even talking to people who have awesome credit scores, and good financial connections, are still faced with a huge waits. It is way different than what services you get down in the Lower Mainland in my humble opinion. But I can not knock anyone person directly–everyone has been great helping me out. I understand that I am asking to borrow money, so I do not mind paying extra for that, but I need a car now, not later.

So tomorrow I try again. This time me a Suz., will go down together and look. Maybe the Car Gods will be on my side then, and all will work out. For now, all eyes are looking in all directions, searching for that car with the right fit.

Getting Ready – Halloween is Around the Corner

With just over two weeks to go, I decided that I should start getting the decorations for Halloween this weekend, rather than waiting until next week. Now, I am not going to do anything at my home becuase I probably will not be there for Halloween night when the kids come around. All of this will be for at my work. I have my own little office there, so I am free to do what ever I want with it, as long as it fits within safety and human rights guidelines. This should be no troubles for me. I do plan on dressing up too for the event at my work, since Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year.

I am not sure whether or not I will buy treats and candies, but I will leave that option open for when the times comes. I am sure my co-workers will do stuff too. I know I will not spend a lot, probably keeping my budget down to twenty-five dollars or so. I just want to keep fun factor high. I love this time of year, and I think our Federal Government should make Halloween a Holiday here in Canada.

Happy Friday the Thirteenth!

Things Are Looking Up

It is early Saturday Morning, and I decided to get up, rather than sleep in. I figure, if I had a good week, then getting up early on a day off is well deserved, especially since I never physically worked that hard. So, in this post, I want to talk about my job. As you may have guessed, I do not reveal where I work, and give out the name of my employer here on my blog. Let me just say, it makes life less complicated by keeping these personal. To sum up everything thus far, I would say things are awesome. I would have never of dreamed of capturing a job of this quality, up here in Terrace–ever. Believe me, my sites were set low, based on my past experience as a kid growing up here. But then, life is full of surprises.

When I first moved to Terrace, I thought I would land some low wage job, say in retail, that would get my by for the next year or two. My sites were set that low. Hey, I see Canada as the land of two worlds: one that is really doing well, and other half in a constant state of struggle. Perhaps I landed on the side that is really doing well? Anyway, the level of employment was a surprise based on my initial research before I moved up here. I plotted jobs, went through the cycles, and watched the trends. From the Lower Mainland, Metro Vancouver, area, all pointed to employment being largely comprised of low wage jobs in the retail market. Things change when you step on Terrace Soil, and being here is not the same as not being here.

I learned quickly that services are run different, and that employers, and the locals, use them differently than those in the Lower mainland. The local news paper charges a lot for ads, so that gets used only when the job is either hard to fill, or come from deep pockets with imperatives, usually from outside the local economy. The Internet is a powerful tool, and slowly it is being embraced, but largely, human networking is the way of things here. Sure, I found my job on the net, but it largely hinged on being here, as a local.

It has been two full weeks now working for this company. For the most part, I have ninety percent of the job learned. Running a warehouse has its basics, and all models run the same way, only the means change are differ from one to another. I fell quite nicely in the grove, and the fit was almost perfect.

Amazingly, the wage was the shocker. I never bothered to ask what the wage was. I just assumed, based on my experience from the Lower Mainland that the job would be somewhere around twelve to fourteen dollars per hour. My heart leaped out when my trainer said seventeen for training, then twenty, once I passed. Later it was reviled that I would be making eighteen for my probation period, then twenty there after. And somewhere down the long path, the job had the potential of reaching thirty-two dollars per hour. We will see.

The pace of this job is way below from where I came from. If fact, I would say the job interactions are less than five percent compared to my last place of employment. Let me give you an example. Here, last Thursday, I had three parcels to receive, comprised of fifty-five pieces of four items. May last day from my last job, I received over four hundred pieces, of over three hundred items, on three full shipping containers/trailers, and half of that was unloaded by hand and sorted. So I went from a physical labourer environment, to a manager style job. Not bad.

Well, everyone is starting to get up here in my building complex. I better close this off, and start my day.

A Little Update On the Job

A couple of things, first, it is now one month since I pulled into town, and second, today is the day I went solo at my work. But before I will go into all that, I just want to take a few moments on our weather. Terrace, British Columbia is notorious about it’s weather. It is either too warm, or too cold, and it rains here a lot, but it is known to have its dry spells as well, for the most part, it is mild year round. The one thing I can say right now, there is no danger of forest fires here. We did get up to “Medium” rating, but we were far from any “High” rating, or super hot weather to cause us any warnings of forest fires. So, that being said, it is currently raining, lightly, and is 16C according to my window thermometer. 

So, today was the day that I went solo at my work. Normally, employees who under go the training, will get at least two weeks training, with a few more weeks of guidance. Not me. I got two days of getting all my paper work done for my personal data, with employee processing. Then I got four days of training, sort of the rush-avalanche of everything I need to know, then thrown into the deep end to run an entire warehouse all by myself today. Oh sure I had my managers to call upon, and the lead supervisor to ask for help, but in general, it was just me.

The tasks I have for the job are very straight forward. Like every other warehouse I have worked in, this place is no different. The logistics are the same. Inventory is the same. And the shipping and receiving are standard. The difference with this place are, the hugely complex procedures, and multiple systems that have to be used. It is just horrendous. If it were not for my background in software, computers and online networks, the mountain may have been to steep to climb. In essence, there are six main software, and multiple procedures to follow, to get the basic job done.

To more a box from one end of the warehouse to the other, you need to run three pieces of software, and do about twenty minutes of procedural work to do that job.  On top of that, there are about ten different categories for freight earmarked for general uses. And with a small work force, this complex system is riddled with mistakes and errors. Then there are the daily, weekly and monthly reports; each with its own special flavour of needs and details. There is always something to hand in, or audit.

I will not get into the mobile equipment, but hold on for some funny tails later on.

I can say I am loving it. The job is very good, only becuase it is a low volume location. Most of the workers have been there for well over two decades, so most everyone knows their job well. And the pay is awesome. I think I will do nicely here.

Ah, The Old World Has Not Changed One Bit

Life here in Terrace has been pretty laid back so far. No major stresses or outstanding worries, and most of the people here out in town have been very friendly. But my apartment block is a whole other world! So far, I have met about eighty precent of my neighbours. Out of that, maybe half have a job, and the other half, I am not sure. The little old lady who lives three doors down from me is another story, but I will type a little about her in this post. The new boys next door, well, it had only been five day since they moved in, and already I am thinking about getting out of here, as they drew the line for me. And the smoking, and begging…!

It has been hot here for the last week, so naturally I have been leaving my windows open. I bought some good screens to keep the flies out, and I have a fan blowing clean air from the back bedroom window. So far, today, it is 24C inside, and 28C outside. The weather has been fantastic, so say the least. I got up about 8:00 am, and made some breakfast and coffee to start the day with. I also have my computer set to watching the news, live streaming it, so I catch up on the day’s events. Then all of a sudden a face presses up against my front window–it was the little old lady from two doors down. She poke her head in as far as she could, and asked, “How are you. I was wondering if I could barrow $20.00 dollars from you?” I am setting in my chair in disbelief, “You are kidding” I thought. I replied, “No.” For several seconds she stood there, looking at me, then she got the hint and left. I am still a little freaked out about that. Nothing is private any more.

But last night took the cake. The two boys that moved in next door to me, well, they were drunk. They sit outside, smoking of course, and talking to each other about how the world owes them, and why they deserve so much more. I was totally caught off guard when one of them asked me if I had Internet, wifi, and if I could share it with until he got hooked up. Before I could answer him, the other fellow asked if I had booze of my own because they needed more. Rather than answering them, I just got into my truck and drove away. Long story–short, I did not get anything from the store–their Interact/Credit machines were out, so I came straight back home. The boys were just walking out when I pulling in. They asked me if I could give a lift down the road, and I said no, becuase I am going home and probably going to bed after that. After some obscenities, they waved me away, and kept on walking towards town. By this time, they could barely walk on their own from being so drunk. Yes, the wild West, or something.

Sometimes I think I am the only one that does not smoke cigarettes. When I took this place, the landlord specifically said to me that these apartments were none smoking. I think everyone here smokes. This is why I have the fan blowing air inside from the back room as opposed to having it in the front room. Sometimes they sit outside in front of their apartments to have their cigarettes, so the smoke drifts into my place if I have windows open. It is tolerable.

The one saving grace is there is hardly any noise, like partying, fighting, and music. So far, the place has been awesome for being quite. I hear the odd bit of noise, but in general, it is very quiet.

Like my girlfriend said, you expect this sort of thing for the rent money you are paying. I can say, with all honesty, I picked a low income area to live, for the value that I am paying. Well, the options were slim to say the least at the time before I moved here, but yes, I see another move in the near future.

Happy Canada Day!

The Canada 150 flags are everywhere, and almost everyone is wearing red, with the Canada 150 logo on it. I am not wearing red, but I am walking around with my camera on one side and my girl friend on the other. It is quite the festive atmosphere. I my highlight will the fireworks. I am hoping to catch those. The draw back is, being so far North, it does not really get dark here at night.

It seems the action is in Kitimat, BC, about a half hour drive South from Terrace, BC. They will have fireworks and street parties. I am sure not what all Terrace will do for events, but we had a look. Rain is the threat today, so travel will be limited becuase of that. But it is warm out.

Repost: 10:00pm

So, we started the day in Terrace, then drove over to Kitimat, BC were the real festivities were being held. Sadly there was not much happening in Terrace. We missed the pancake breakfast, and the first half the events at the Heritage Park, so we just spent the first part the day at the down town park checking out the Farmer’s Market and some performers. We then decided to head off to Kitimat, about 30-40 kilometres South of Terrace.

Below is one of the performers in Terrace, BC who was singing at the George Little Park by where the Farmer’s Market was being held.

Then it was off to Kitimat, BC to take part in the Canada Day festivities there.

When we got there, we just made it to the singing of the national anthem, “Oh Canada.” It was sung by a local young woman who sang it pretty good. Plus, there was a good size crowd there too.

Then it was off to the Douglas Channel, were we saw lots of stuff in the harbour. It was nice to smell the saltwater. But these people on the huge tree root just killed me from laughing. I thought, “what a great a shot!” You judge for yourself?

I took the above photo with my 300mm lens, but by the time a got around to get a better shot, they were all gone from the giant tree root. Yes, it was super low tide, normally this is under water. Reo Tinto is just on the other side of the bay.

We stopped off at Lakesle Lake, and there we found the break in sky where the Sun shone threw. So naturally, since we were by Water Lilly Bay, I got a great shot of some Water Lillies at Furlong Bay.

And that concludes the day’s event for me. I had dinner at my girlfriend’s place, and then off to home, where is was nearly 9:00pm when I got in. Phew, it was a long day, but it was fun.

I am Connected!

Feels great to be in touch with the world again. I am back on my PC, with all my links, bookmarks and updated files. Yes, I am connected! I think I was going through Internet withdraw too. Anyway, that is all behind now. I have so far spent the entire day updating and catching up on everything. So many emails, and just about two hours reading them, and another replying back. Also, I have the phone, which has not rang yet, but hopefully it will.

One of the first things I did was update my job search. Now that I have new phone number, I had to change everything on several job search websites. That took about an hour. I managed to send out a couple resumes too in the process. It is so nice to check whenever I want as opposed to whenever I can a hot spot, or friends.

If I have not contacted you yet, fear not, I will get to you.

Update on my Banking: Still no word on when the transfer has taken place. I think I am going in tomorrow, at least I can update my stuff now. I should of taken my money with me. LOL Hindsight is always twenty/twenty, eh?