Friday, March 27, 2009

Census Training

This morning I called the Census Bureau to find out the location of my classes which are to begin Monday, March 30th. Two weeks ago they called me and offered me the job. At that time they told me when the classes were to begin but they didn’t tell me the location. I patiently waited two weeks for a call from the Census Bureau and heard nothing. This wasn’t a good sign. So, this morning I called. I was informed that the classes would be in at the Lighthouse Church in Laurel, Delaware. Laurel is 21 miles from where I live. At least the training session wasn’t in Philadelphia or Dover. My greater concern was once I finished the classes, where would I be assigned? I told the Census Bureau representative it was too far me to travel and to count me out.

Later today I received a call from the local supervisor of the Census Bureau. She informed me that the classes were being held in Laurel as a combination of two areas to save time for training. She assured me that every effort would be made to assign me to the Milton-Lewes area. I expressed my concern that I didn’t want to be knocking on people’s doors who are not in my demographic area. She told me that the census bureau didn’t want to pay for excess mileage to census workers. After her explanation I felt a lot more comfortable.

The first three days will be class training. The next two days will be training in the field. That sounds interesting. I am looking forward to it. The job comes at a good time since my hours have been cut in half at the Inn. I continue to spend money like there is no tomorrow. Just this morning I made a pit stop at Loews’ and purchased several forsythia plants. Spring is just around the corner and I do consider it my personal responsibility to keep Peppers (a local nursery) in business. In the past two weeks I had my 98 Subaru overhauled when my odometer hit 111,000. That set me back over $1,700. I’m shooting for 200,000 miles on my old reliable red Forester. Last summer I briefly considered buying a new car but when I was only offered $1,600 as trade in (book value was $3,800), I decided keeping my car was worth more than a hefty commission for the Subaru auto dealer.

Wednesday I was fitted for a partial plate at my dentist in Dover. That little baby set me back another $1,049. And that’s with insurance. I only had to pay half. Of course when I was in Dover I had to stimulate the local Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club. Tomorrow I’m going to stimulate a local author and buy up a passel of her very funny books as gifts for my friends. I’ve also made several charitable contributions (local theater group, local fire company) in the past week. Then there are my regular monthly bills for Discover Card, Master Card, propane gas bill, electric bill, water bill, and the combination telephone/satellite TV/DSL computer connection/wireless phone bill from Verizon. It still boggles my mind how my hillbilly ancestors in the hills of western North Carolina managed without these “necessities” of life. Oh yes, I’m high maintenance.

So what to do? Cut back and hibernate in my house or work more and continue my lavish lifestyle? Oh yes, I do like to eat out. This Sunday I have a date with my friends at the Purple Parrot in Rehoboth Beach. We won’t have too many more of these Sunday night get-togethers once the horde of summertime tourists descend on our quaint little beach resort. I don’t think there is any question as to my choice. I will make the laborious trip next week to Laurel for my census training classes. It’s only for a week. Compare that to the eleven year commute I made from Downingtown, PA to Philadelphia which I paid $280 a month for the privilege of doing so. Of course there is no comparison. I have gotten spoiled since I moved to Delaware. I’m glad that the Census Bureau has offered me a job and is paying for my training. I am very fortunate. The adventure continues.

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