10/09/2011

This Is My Job...



I haven't talked about it much on the blog, but the last several years have not been good for someone working in architecture in northern Michigan.  There are very few people building right now with a glut of cheap real estate and foreclosures available.  Last fall it became clear that there just wasn't enough architecture work to keep me steadily busy.  So I worked as a paid ski patroller for the resort I've volunteer patrolled at since 1997.  It wasn't great pay, but it was something I knew how to do.  Besides, I love to be outside during the winters up here, especially if it's spent skiing.  Once the season was over, I thought I had lined up more lucrative architecture work, but it fell through.  After I got done fixing our bathroom, it was time to find something to do.  The resort where I ski patrol also has a year-round zipline tour.  Since I knew a lot of the other employees from the ski season, I asked if they needed help.  A lot of the college students were leaving to go back to school in August, so I started leading tours and have been there since.  The downside is that the pay sucks, at least compared to what I used to make.  Luckily, it is a pretty low-stress job.  No one ever yells at me for anything.  Most of the people who come out are looking to have a good time and I honestly have never had a complaint on my tours.  You're outside.  The ziplining itself is fun.  And now, we are enjoying some kick-ass Indian Summer - leaves at their peak colors and close to 80 degrees.  It's beautiful.  I also like the people I work with, most of whom are much younger than me.  It's reassuring to know that I can still relate to people in their early twenties.  It's not something I plan to make a career of, but it's not bad for the meantime. The video features five of the ten lines on the tour.

5 comments:

SkylersDad said...

I've been wondering how you have been doing Chris, I hope that you continue to have fun with this and the ski patrol job. But I wish you luck in getting some steady work in architecture also.

Scope said...

That zip-line stuff looks fun. but you need to have some explosives going off, even if they are signs in the trees with "Ka-BOOM!" written on them, so people feel like they are in an action movie.

If I were on the zip-line, I would be imagining explosions.

SkylersDad said...

By the way, you need to travel to South Africa and "cross train" with these folks. Maybe you can talk your employer into it?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3r0pROzHY5M

guido said...

That looks awesome.

Bill said...

Sorry to see northern Michigan doesn't have roads and hasn't discovered,taxis, bikes and scooters. That's a tough way to get to work, especially with a cuppa coffee and an iPad. Maybe next year.