Monday, August 26, 2013

Mount Rainier

I look like a nut. I love this pic! The snow kept falling off the trees and onto my head.
   I have been to Mount Rainier so many times that I kinda have to chose just one trip to talk about because we don't want a fifty page vacation story. However, I would like to state here that Mount Rainier is fantastic at every season. There isn't a bad time to go. There just isn't. However, in the winter, many of the roads and trails are closed due to the snow, and you can't even enter the park unless your car is prepared for snow, meaning snow tires or chains. That does put a damper on some people's trip planning, but in the winter there is skiing and sledding and snowboarding and snowshoeing.
   So I am going to talk about our winter trip, which was my daughter's 9th birthday trip. We have been since then, but this trip was really outstanding and memorable. My whole family went, which means my mom, my sister, her two kids, and my daughter and I; also this was my daughter's birthday. She had never had such an extravagant birthday before, and she hasn't had a trip this extravagant since. But the timing was right and we wanted to go snowshoeing. We had never gone snowshoeing before, and I am not sure what possessed us, but we were gonna do it. My family gets like that.
   We stayed at the National Park Inn for this trip. A lot of people like Paradise Inn, and I like that inn too, but Paradise is closed for the winter. You can't get to that section of the park because of the massive amounts of snow and ice. National Park Inn stays open year round.
We saw this awesome looking bird from the porch.
    The one thing to remember about both of these inns are that they are historic and have not been tampered with a lot. Some of the rooms do not have their own shower and toilet; there are public ones for everyone to use, but some of the newer rooms do have a private bathroom. We always specify that we want a bathroom. If we didn't want our own private bathroom, we would go camping, not stay at an Inn.
    The roads were icy, so when we got to the National Park Inn, the car stayed parked for the entire six days that we were there. (Yes, we tend to take week-long vacations. We like to really sink our teeth into a vacation. Such long stays are not really needed if you don't want to stay that long.) We left the Inn; the minivan did not. No one wanted to drive.
    My sister's kids got sick on this trip, so even though she was with us, we didn't see as much of her because they stayed in the room a lot. We did see some of her, but we need to get her up there again so she can visit when her kids aren't sick, because now that I think of it, I think this is the only time my sister has gone. She gets less vacation time then me, and I get less than my mom. As such, my daughter has spent more time on Mount Rainier than I have, because even when  I can't go, my mom often takes her as a travel buddy.
She liked sledding, and those are my gloves she is wearing. Why?
    I loved snowshoeing! It was really fun. We didn't really know what we were doing, but we figured it all out eventually, and there was no one there to laugh at us for our inexperience. Mount Rainier in the winter is really beautiful, and you really get a sense of isolation when you are out on the trails in your snowshoes. My daughter loved sledding on her sled. She had a blast with that. She liked snowshoeing as well, and the pattern of our days tended to be that we would spend the morning outside snowshoeing and sledding, and then in the afternoon we would hang around the inn. They have a huge porch, with  comfy chairs all along the length of the porch, and you can sit and relax and look at all the snow. They also have a large common room, with a lot of seating, and you can sit by the fireplace and read a book or knit (my mom knits) or whatever. These things we did in the afternoons, when we were tired from all the morning activity.
    During the other seasons, there are a lot more open trails and all of the visitor centers are open, and there are ranger programs, and all of these things are really good. But Mount Rainier is different for each season, and this winter trip was really nice. I loved all the snow and all the isolation and peace. You can really get away from the rest of the world, especially since cell signals don't work and there is no wifi and the inn doesn't have TVs. You really have to leave all that technology behind and just enjoy your visit.

Isn't Mount Rainier beautiful?

   In case anyone is wondering, all of the vacation pics I have posted of all my vacations where taken by my mom. She is quite the photographer, I think. And in case you are interested, the link (in blue) to Mount Rainier, so that you can find out more and maybe plan your own trip :) 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Ocean Shores = Awesome

My daughter and myself at Ocean Shores. We did wade a lot.
   I was kinda wracking my brain for a prewritten post to schedule while I was one vacation. I want to keep content flowing while I am gone, but I also have to keep content flowing right now, so that is a lot of writing. But then I thought, well, last post I talked about Disney, so why not continue with a vacations past theme? I am not so sure that anyone wants to hear about all my vacations, but I love to go on vacation, so I am going to go for it. I plan for my vacations all year, because I need time to save money and request time off and all that good stuff. Sometimes, however, I cannot be so spend-y as to go to places like Yellowstone and Disney. I have to be mindful of budget at all times. Who doesn't? No one I know of; we are all being mindful of money right now.
   But there are often many places that you can go to that are nearby to you, and as such, aren't as costly. I have two nearby places that I love to go to: Ocean Shores and Mount Rainier. I love these places. They are great places to go and relax and they are obviously very different. Washington is great like that; there are many diverse places to go, we have mountains, oceans, and even a temperate rain forest! (It's near Forks, haha! You can see the home of the Sparkle Fairies while you are there.) I haven't been to the rain forest yet, but I have tentative plans to go, in the far, far future. (Not that far!)
    The last vacation I went on a vacation, I went to Ocean Shores. I went with my mom and my daughter; my sister couldn't come. She didn't have vacation time, so we want to go again when she can come. My sister is zany, and we miss the zany loudness that is signature to her personality. But my mom and I had a great time.
    Pretty much, we got to our hotel at Ocean Shores, and we parked, and we didn't leave. I love the beach, but if you are used to the beaches at Florida, or along the Southern areas, where I originally come from, then you do need to understand that Northern beaches do seem to be different, from my experience. The water is not the same color and the sand is different, and there are more rocks and plant-life and not so much vast sandy shores of white or yellow sand. Plus, the water is cold. REALLY FREAKING COLD.
    Nevertheless, the beach is beautiful, and Ocean Shores is really awesome, so I am not saying all this to downplay the beach here. I am just saying different: not saying yuck. The beach here is so awesome, and the birds that you can see are amazing. We saw so many ocean birds! A lot of pelicans and seagulls and little birds that I don't know the name for and they were all eating crab. We would go walk the beach every single morning as the tide went in, and these huge crabs would get caught in the tide pools. Then the birds would come get the crabs and smash them on rocks or hard ground, and they would feast. All the birds were really fat, and I was really jealous. I love crab. With all that crab-eating going on around me, I ended up ordering crab dishes for most of my meals. Soooo good.
I thought the pelicans were so neat to watch.
    I didn't want to go in the water at first. You don't see a whole lot of people getting in the water at Ocean Shores. The water is cold, and it's also rough. But my daughter really wanted to, so we let her. Then the next thing I know, my mom was in the damn water. I was like, "MOM!" I wasn't expecting her to get in. But that is my mom for you; never think that you can predict what she is going to do. She went out pretty far too, which worried me, because my daughter went with her, and I have made my helicopter mom disease no secret. I was nervous; they laughed at me. My mom is a bad influence, but you can't exactly scold your mother, so sometimes I just find myself suffering. I do not suffer in silence, however. Then she retaliates by bringing up all the crazy and wild stuff that I did, and then I like to bring up the fact that she grounded me when I did that stuff, and in fact, she still sometimes threatens to ground both me and my sister, even though we are adults.
   But this was a very relaxing vacation. My mom has the corner on stressful jobs; she is an oncology nurse, so she really needs the destressing time, but I can use this time as well. Getting away from the daily routine and away from all the stress is really something that we all need to do every once in a while.

This is a really beautiful and relaxing beach.

Here is the link (in blue) to the City of Ocean Shores, if you might be interested in planning your own trip or just looking at info. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Vacation! For Two Weeks :)

    I am writing this blog post in advance so that my blog can still have a little new content while I am on vacation. At the time that I actually publish this, I will be on my way to Yellowstone!!! So excited. I am going with my mom, my sister, her two kids, and my daughter and we are all going to pile into my sister's minivan and go! We are all very excited. But I didn't want my blog to be completely inactive while I was on vacation, and you can schedule posts to publish, so I thought, why not write a few!
   Of course, you might be wondering why  I don't just take my laptop and publish while I am on vacation. Don't worry -- I will write up some good Yellowstone vacation posts when I come back, but to be brutally honest, my laptop is no longer portable. My family understands that I am a tightwad for certain expenses, so they don't say much when they look at my ancient laptop held together with tape. But what would the public think? Plus, I don't think the tape would hold together for travel. My laptop is stationary at home because when you move my laptop, you can hear the hinges creaking and cracking. I am so going to have to get a new one soon, but I am waiting until after vacation. If I bought one now, that would eat heavily into my vacation money, and I just won't do that. I have been saving for this vacation for a year. I had to scrimp and scrimp and pinch pennies left and right, and I am not wasting that money on a laptop!
Teacups spin, and I get sick, so my sis took the kiddos on this one.
    We will be gone for two weeks, so I am going to write up some posts in advance to publish, so you'll have something to read from me if you want. And then when I come back, I will try to have some good pictures and topics about our family vacation to amuse you with.
   The last vacation that we did as an entire family was to Disneyland, and that was a blast. That vacation was mine and my daughter's second visit, but my sister's and her kids first visit, and we had a great time. The best time we had was on the It's A Small World ride. Now, I know that some people think that this is a dull ride, but I like this ride. And I am curious about whether or not you could actually tip that boat that we ride in. So my sister and I spent several trips trying to do that, and on the last, final good-bye trip, we shared a boat with a dad and his teenage son! They participated in our attempt to tip over the small world boat. We did not succeed, but the attempt was so much fun. I hope that they had as much fun as we did. They were laughing with us, so I think so. Probably this was not the safest activity (duh, no probably to this, it wasn't safe, dumbass. Don't do this!.)
    Anyway, we didn't act like this the entire time. And we never acted like this when there was someone who really didn't appreciate our attempts. We are not the types to spoil someone else's fun. My sister's kids have the same twisted, warped personalities that seem to be genetic in our family, but we usually sat in a boat alone, and the in this case, the other family was willing! Plus, the boats are really well connected, so I was about 90% sure that we would not tip it. And I was right.
     Regardless of wild shenanigans, I will return in two weeks. So if you ask a question, and I don't answer you, hopefully you know that this is because I am on vacation. I will line up a few blog posts for scheduled posting while I am gone, but I won't be responding to questions/comments until I get back. And then I will regale you with my wild pet-the-bear Yellowstone stories. (Joking, joking.)

Disney is freaking awesome; I don't care how jaded and cranky you are. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

"Just A Cashier"

   I was working today, which is not that unusual in and of itself, as I work five days a week, but while I was working, I got one of those customers. One of those insufferable job snobs, who are so insecure about themselves that they feel the need to try and make an honest person earning an honest living feel badly about themselves. Regretfully, this happens often enough. But while I don't like ripping into those who need assistance programs such as food stamps, having been in that program myself some years back (so I know that not all people on this program are like this, not by a long shot), I really don't need the job snobbery from someone who whips out three effing food stamp cards to pay their grocery bill.
   But what makes today special, different from all the other times this has happened, was the fact that today I had a defender, and this defender wasn't myself. This defender was an elderly gentleman, who calmly stated to the woman with the three food stamp cards (something that really shouldn't happen. I had enough trouble getting one card when I needed it, and this woman pulls out three?)  "I was taught by my grandfather the value of hard work. And that if you can work hard and are willing to do whatever job it takes, you will never go hungry, nor will your family. I was taught that no job is shameful if it's honest."
   I am not sure, in this economy, that this statement about going hungry is entirely true, because there just aren't a ton of jobs, and no one can support a family on minimum wage without help of some kind, whether from family and friends or from the government. That being said, having someone stand up for me like that, someone I didn't even know, made me feel good. I am not ashamed of my job, and I wasn't going to give this woman the power to make me feel bad, but I see no reason not to allow the little bit of gladness that came over me when someone stuck up for me. And there is some sense to what he says. If you don't have a job, why can't you work somewhere like a grocery store or a fast food place until you find something better? It beats sitting around and not working at all, right? Wrong, in some people's minds. I don't understand that attitude. Work is work.
    I don't know everybody else's situation, but I can explain mine quite clearly. I have two degrees. I have an AAS  in Library and Information Services, and I have a BA in Health and Human Services. Both degrees looked good to me when I started my education. No, neither of them made megabucks, but all I have ever wanted was to be independent and able to pay my bills, so I was fine with a smaller income. The jobs interested me. Library because I love books and like working with people, human services because I feel that  I have a lot of experience under my belt in regards to partner abuse and living under the poverty line, and I like helping people come up with solutions to problems. (I did know that I needed a Master's in Human Services to do the stuff I want to do. That is a goal for the future; we all need goals to work towards.) Seems like a good fit, right? Well, as much as I like those things, I need to support my daughter.
   When I started working at the place that I work, the grocery store I won't name because I don't want to affiliate myself without permission, I thought this was a temp job while I put myself through college. Then I started working up through the pay raise system, and in order to take a job in either of my degree fields, a starting position, I would now have to take a pay cut. Also, while I was working my way up through the raise system at my cashier job, I became eligible for insurance, something that only takes about 25 hrs a week to be eligible for, when most companies insist on you making around 30 or more hrs to be eligible. Plus that insurance, covering both my daughter and I, including dental and vision, only costs $39.99 a month. That is the combined price for both my daughter and myself, and my insurance is pretty good. Those starter jobs in the fields I have degrees for have only offered part time work in my area, and offer no insurance benefits; a must for a single mom.
    Then there is the stock I own, because my store is employee owned, which I am counting as either part of my retirement, or part of my daughter's college expenses. Perks of my little cashier job, so-to-say. So while my job might not be the most intellectually stimulating, because all I do is check, that job has also allowed me to fill one of my goals: to be able to be independent and provide for my family without the use of government assistance programs. While my job may not require a degree and there are times when, yes, I am working on autopilot, I work with the best people. My coworkers are some of the best people I know, and I have my set of regular customers that I enjoy seeing and talking with while I ring up their order. I love the people I work with, even when I get that bad customer that makes my day suck. And when I get that bad customer, I know that when I get to the break room, there is going to be some coworker upstairs who will laugh about that experience with me. All jobs have things that suck, no matter what that job is. There is going to be some kind of suck factor; you kinda have to deal with that part of life and move on. I have, and I appreciate my job fully, and am thankful. I don't know what the future will bring, but if I work here for life I won't have done badly. Nothing shameful in providing a honest, quality life for your child.
   Even though my attempt to earn a Master's is on hold while I recover from the burnout I suffered while earning that BA, and while I pay off some of the student loans I have racked up, I am quite happy. Another perk of my job? Two weeks paid vacation; so while the woman with the multiple food stamps cards is doing whatever it is she does, I am getting ready for my vacation, and I am going to be visiting one of the most beautiful places in America: Yellowstone. To top that off, I'm going to be paid while I'm there.
  So think about that the next time you are looking down your nose at someone who is working an honest job. Things are not always what they seem to be, so don't make snap judgments; honest advice from an over-educated cashier. 

Friday, August 9, 2013

Who The Hell Is Designing This Shit?

   Last weekend I took my daughter school clothes shopping; an event that can be hectic, crowded, and headache inducing. Not to mention the fact that my budget is going to be in recovery mode for several months. Of course, I could do the Goodwill thing, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, but lets face facts here: I get pissed off just searching the sales racks at JCP. Do you really think I am going to be able to go through bins and bins and racks and racks of discarded crap searching for the diamonds in the rough? I know people who can come out of the Goodwill store with donated goods that would make you drool with envy, but I am not one of them.
   So I face the crowded mall instead, and crowded malls suck. There are rude-ass teenagers, which all I can say about that is God help my daughter if I EVER catch her acting like that. God help her if I catch her thinking about acting like that. As the woman who changed her diapers for the first few years of her life, I can remind her with all assurance that her shit does stink, and if she is gonna be a rude little douche, she can do so with no TV, no phone, no games, no outside activities, and no social life. Good thing for both of us, thus far, she has shown no inclination towards that type of behavior.
   Then there are the poor, flustered moms with screaming babies, and I always feel somewhat bad for them. I was there, so it's an empathetic response. People without kids sometimes fail to realize that a parent needs to get things taken care of just as much as the next person, and you can't always drop everything and run home because your kid is being a butt. Yet moms who do what should be done in those situations (the ones where the kids are just having a hissy-fit and not really hurt or sick) and ignore the caterwauling kiddos, get major stink-eye and rude comments on their parenting skills. Heaven help those moms if they actually try to discipline the kids, because there are gonna be twitchy fingers dialing CPS all up and down the mall. I feel bad for those moms, and I am glad the throw-a-fit-public phase is long past.
    But get past all the people, all the crowds that accompany the mall on a Saturday in the month before school starts, and you actually get to the clothes shopping. Since my daughter is now too big for the kid section, this now means that she has to shop in juniors, which means good-bye standardized sizes and hello to trying every single thing on. I'm not kidding, because by the time the day was over my daughter had a range of pants spanning from a size 0 to a size 3. And her tops spanned from small to large. All I can say about that is: good grief.
    But what I really want to know is this: when did it become appropriate for little girls to wear the type of clothes that are now offered to them? Call me crazy, but many of the manikins that where set up in juniors seemed to be displaying clothing like a see-through top with nothing but a bra on underneath. No layering of tanks, just flesh and boobs. Not what I want advertised to my eleven year old daughter. Then there are the tiny little barely-there tanks, and what I noticed was that a lot of these little girls around me and my daughter were wearing similar tanks. I have nothing against a tank, but I like that tank to cover all of my daughter's no-no bits and I don't think the world needs a view of her belly button. I am sure that you can guess that she has a belly button without actually viewing it. And don't try to sit or bend in some of those skirts offered unless you have shorts on underneath. Why is this stuff being offered to teenage girls? Why are we sexualizing our daughters in this manner?
   I don't consider myself an uptight, rigid person. I don't care what grown women chose to wear; they are adults and should make their own choices. I don't look at someone dressed in skimpy, barely-there clothing, make assumptions and start slut-shaming. I am against that type of judgmental behavior. But that doesn't mean that my preteen daughter should dress in any kind of sexy, alluring manner. This makes her a target and gives people the wrong image of her. And while I try not to make those types of assumptions, this doesn't mean that other people won't. Many of them will, and it's naive to think otherwise. Some of those people assuming things could be predators, and want to harm her, and while I don't believe in victim-blame, I don't want to put out the welcome mat either.
   Beyond some perv seeing her as a potential target, I don't think that these displays cater to a full range of potential customers. Many of these displays would not look very good on girls who are not small breasted and very thin. I think that this sends the wrong message across to little girls. Because really, only the waif-like body type looks good in some of this clothing. So you send little girls the message that to be a beautiful woman, you have to look a certain way -- a way that is not going to be natural for many women because no two people are built alike. My eleven year old daughter is going to be a curvy girl. She is not overweight, but she has a large-breasted mom, and the kiddo is already developing. Nothing but plastic surgery is going to change her curves, so I don't want her holding herself to this standard of beauty. This is not the right standard for her, but this standard seems to be all that the department stores are advertising.
   Also, I mean, for a designer to look at a little girl, all of them underage and full out jail-bait, and to put that little girl in a see-through, made-to-display-a-lacy-bra shirt with a barely-there skirt or peek-a-boo, torn-so-you-can-see-my-ass jeans, that seems a little sick to me. We aren't talking about displaying a grown woman's body here, we are talking a NOT LEGAL, don't go there unless you want momma-bear to cut you in bad places, little girl. And by little girl, I mean any girl under the age of eighteen. Pervert clothing designers.  

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Day Off? More Like Alternative Work Day

   I've been getting a lot of hours lately -- which is not written as a complaint because I need my hours. However, I will state for the record that I am positive the CEOs of my grocery store chain are time wizards straight out of some fantasy story, because time STOPS while I am at work. I will be checking, and checking, and checking, ringing up lines and lines of people, and when I look at the clock, sure that at least an hour has passed, I find that barely fifteen minutes has gone by. How is that possible? My vote is time wizards.  But time wizards aside, I am used to having more time off, and now I have less. And my to-do list is getting longer and longer and longer. Of course, there is the usual things, like that never-ending pile of laundry, the fact that my kitchen floor is questionable, and the dust that I try to ignore with all my might.Those who knew me as a teenager might be surprised that I even know how to clean -- my bedroom used to be a sea of decay. Those days are long past though, and while I will never be the female version of Mr. Clean (thank God), I do like things to be livable. So no sea of decay.
   But other things are stacking up as well. School is just around the bend, so I have to get all of my daughter's school stuff ready, and I need to call the school and talk to someone because I have a small issue that I need help resolving. Not only is my daughter starting a new school year, but she is starting a new school and I am not ready to be the mother of a middle school girl (Junior High in some places, middle school here). Not only am I mentally not prepared, but I also just plain-out don't have all the things she'll need and I need to update her shot records and a million other things.
    Vacation is coming up, and I need to get the rest of the things I need (bug spray!) for two weeks in Yellowstone and we need to get reservations straightened out and I need to notify my bank and credit card companies that I am going traveling, so could they please not freeze my card when I start making out-of-state purchases? That would suck. I also need to go to the apartment office and let them know that I will be gone for two weeks, because they like to know this in case something comes up.
    I can go on with this list of stuff that needs to be done, and honestly, the laundry is the one thing that tends to weigh on my mind the most, because I hate laundry with a passion that beats all other passions. But what I really need to do with my day off is actually get some rest because my stomach has been waging war on me, but I just don't think that this is going to happen. My days off are only days off from my cashier job. My mom job, my head-of-household job, the many hats that I have to wear to keep things trucking along, all these jobs are all waiting for me. Lurking in the shadows, just waiting to pounce. Day off? Don't make me laugh. 

Friday, August 2, 2013

Hot Dog Stand Hell

   I don't like working in the food service industry. There are several reasons for that; I don't have the personality that is needed to be a server in a restaurant, and I don't give a shit whether or not you want a booth. My brief stint as a waitress has given me a lot of respect for those who are servers; they take a lot of shit and they take it with a smile. But needless to say, when I started working in retail, I thought food serving was behind me.
   Eventually, my career path led me to grocery stores. My first experience in retail had more to do with tanning salons and video rental -- not groceries. I like groceries better. Video rental died with the advent of Netflix and Redbox, and tanning salons are gross. But I did not expect to find myself serving hot food again, especially after switching to grocery and steering clear of the deli. Deli and meat departments are the two departments I have 0% experience in.
    But in the grocery store I worked at while I still lived in Florida, for some reason unknown to me, management decided we were going to have a little side business and open a hot dog stand in the front sidewalk of our store. Beats the hell out of my why anyone thought that this was a good idea, but they ran with it. Before us lowly employees had time to sneeze, management had one of those little mobile food trailers rented -- the kind of little trailers that you see at fairs and sometimes at farmer's markets.
   And I had a manager that volunteered me for everything. Need help in the pharmacy? Marie will do it. Need an assistant in floral? Marie will do that. Need someone to learn to cut up the fresh fruit bar? Well, Marie will do that too. He even put me on the early morning cleaning crew, and waking up at 3 a m to get ready to spend the early morning deep cleaning check stand sucks. But I wasn't surprised when I found out he had scheduled me for a day in the hot dog stand. As the person who had hired me, he knew that I had a food service background. He just didn't know that my food serving skills reeked worse than month-old crusty gym socks.
    But I actually try to be willing and a good sport, so after giving him the glare-of-death, I submitted to a shift in the stupid hot dog stand. Which in the first place, was an oven. Florida, remember? In the summer. Heat. So much heat that you could literally crack open an egg and fry it on a car hood. And I was stuck in a tin food trailer with a fan and a bottle of water. Thanks.
   The second problem? Guess what they gave me to cook the hot dogs with? A grill? A pot of boiling water? Nope. They gave me a effing crock-pot. Have you ever cooked hot dogs in a crock-pot? I had never done it. And when you have a line of people all happy to be getting a hot dog for a buck, cooking hot dogs in a crock-pot is not the way to do things. Crock-pots, as you all know, are slow cookers. And not surprisingly, they cook hot dogs very, very slowly.
    Which means that I kept getting yelled at by people because they wanted these hot dogs fast. And they all had issues with the toppings. We had ketchup and mustard and relish, but we also had frozen onions pulled from the freezer section. And people would scoop up the onions out of this frozen bag, and then complain that they were frozen. Which just got a disdainful "duh" from me. I kinda always thought that if something looked like it was frozen, you would assume that it was frozen. I guess I'm silly like that. Also, apparently I was under-cooking the hot dogs. Having never cooked hot dogs in a crock-pot, and having been given no guidelines, I wasn't sure how long to cook them for. Oops.
    That was bad enough, but the day got worse. Sometime while I was trapped in the metal furnace of hot dog hell, I was bitten by a spider. Spider bites are no fun. They swell to huge sizes, and they get all hot, and they hurt. Those spiders have freaking fangs, and the one that bit me must have been a good size because you could see the mark.
   In case that wasn't enough, someone drove right into the damn trailer while I was in the thing. The trailer was too big to fit onto our front sidewalk, so they put the thing out in the parking lot up front, and some asshole came along and drove right into the side of the trailer. One minute I was grumpily trying to cook hot dogs in a crock-pot, and the next minute the whole trailer was rocking wildly back and forth and hot dog water was sloshing everywhere, and then I was jumping out the side door trying to shout , "Abandon ship!!!" while I laughed my ass off. My manager was not amused, but damn it, I was free!!! I would take that freedom by any means necessary. Even if freedom meant the trailer getting rammed by some elderly person who couldn't see while I was still inside of it. (No one was hurt, not even the elderly guy.) Aaaaaah, sweet freedom. And that was my last stint in food serving service. The hot dog trailer was not damaged, but the next day was manned by some other poor soul.