Cedar City, Utah

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That picture above is the sign at the park near the library. It’s the park where I used to take my kids about 27-30 years ago, but the library was smaller and on a different street before.

Even in the internet era, it’s nice to see that some towns value libraries enough to make them bigger. Usually every time I move to a new area I like to check out the library. If you want to find out about events in your new community, or where different businesses are located around town, then a library usually has all that info.

Well even though I wasn’t looking for a full time job, that’s what I ended up getting. It was the first job I interviewed for also. I am in a training class at work for the next 6 weeks. It still seems a bit confusing but I hope to get the hang of it before training is over. The company gives quite a few discounts at different businesses and today I used a discount to get a new tire put on my car.

The discounts around town, the special bonuses at work, and the idea of maybe setting up a 401k almost make it seem worth staying here a for a few years or maybe even retiring here. But I have awhile before I can think of retirement. But Cedar City is as good a place to settle down as most other place I have been. Course my opinion might change once snow hits the roads.

My company (Convergy’s) even does tuition reimbursement for certain majors like: English, Business Administration, and bunch of computer degrees, and a few others that I can’t remember right now. So if I do decide to stay here, then I will check out school for the Winter semester.

OMG, I almost sound like a normal person living a normal adult life..now that’s weird. Hmm, maybe the heat has melted a few brain cells. Well it’s around the high 80’s-low 90’s here in the afternoon. So it’s better than Death Valley, CA.

Freedom:

American’s love to say they live in a “free” country. But what exactly does that mean? Are we really free to live anywhere we want without ridiculous taxes and expensive rent. Can you live in any state without getting a new driver’s license or voters registration card?

Are we free to go on a week long vacation (or longer) every month or whenever we want? Probably not if you have a job. A job means someone else probably makes your weekly schedule telling you what to wear, what time to show up for the job, and sometimes even what time to eat and go to the bathroom. By the time you get ready for and travel back & forth to that job, you might be to tired to do anything else; during your free time.

I may not have all the answers to what freedom is, or how to live freely. But I know a few things on what it isn’t. Freedom is not paying over $400 a month for a small dorm room that you are forced to share with a total stranger. A room that does not even have any kitchen area. The community bathroom is shared with 50 other people, with no privacy for showers. Hey, I never liked the bathroom in my high school gym class either.

To make a long story short; I left Yellowstone National Park on Thursday (July 14, 2016). So for now I can sleep when I want, eat when and what I want, and I don’t have to climb stairs a hundred times a day. I drove around the park doing a bit of sight-seeing until I got tired of all the tourist traffic. Then I headed South toward Arizona, except I never actually made it to Arizona. I got to Cedar City in Utah, yesterday and decided that was enough driving for me. It took me 2 whole days to drive almost 700 miles.. a distance that most people could do in 12 hours.

But seeing as some people on facebook have told me, that I am cool & brave because I own my own life…not some boss, not a significant other, not some religious or political group. I am the one who decides where I will live, even if that means I change my mind while driving down the interstate.

I found a room to rent in a family’s basement for $265/month. Utilities & wifi included. Also company from the family pets.

So my monthly expenses are:
$60: phone
$63: car insurance
265: rent
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$388 total for the month,

which a part-time job should be able to take care of. Why just a part time job? Well because I want time to find a yoga class, time to get really serious on writing a book, and time to get back into photography & jewelry making. What’s the sense of working so much, if you don’t have time to enjoy life or any hobbies. It seems like most people work to much, just so they can buy more stuff that they won’t even have time to enjoy.

Driving Through the Grand Tetons

On July 3rd, I finally took the time to drive into the Grand Tetons National Park. The mountains were beautiful!!

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I had driven to Moose, WY; because someone had told me to check out the “Church of Transfiguration”.

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I was getting tired from driving and decided that the parking lot looked like a good spot to rest. Finally I went to check out the tiny church. I came upon a big group of people standing outside the door hugging & crying. I stood watching as more people kept coming out of the church with tears running down their faces, and wondered what was going on. After awhile I went inside and met a couple who was celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary. They brought their whole family back to the church they were married in.

I went back to the car and decided to clean it out. I figured that I might just go car-camping for the night there in the parking lot, so I would have plenty of time to finish the job. I was in the middle of nowhere without wifi service, so I was very surprised when outta nowhere my phone dings telling me that I got a facebook notification. I don’t know how facebook got through without wifi, but I got a comment from a friend who knew I was in the Grand Tetons,  and she wanted pics of a lodge that she had worked at years ago.

Well I instantly threw the bag of trash I had collected into the back seat and changed my plans. I had to backtrack and go back 20 miles to reach her lodge that I had just driven past earlier that day. It’s a lodge I had heard of because I have seen job openings for the place before, so I was glad that she gave me an excuse to take the time to go there.

It was 4th of July weekend and as I was walking towards the front door I got quite a few positive comments on my red,white, and blue clothes. The employees were very friendly when I walked into the lobby. I found the staircase that my friend told me to go up. Before I even reached the top of the stairs, I could see a huge window a crossed the room, with such a beautiful view of the mountain range. It instantly reminded me of the time I sat in the airport in Anchorage, AK when as I sat across from a window watching the sun rise and my first real glimpse of the mountains there that just became my whole view. Well I got that same over-whelming AWE as I climbed the stairs in Jackson Lake Lodge, in the Grand Tetons. I guess mountains just have a way of making me speechless.

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I tried taking pictures from the staircase looking across the room and out the window, but they all came out dark. I had to go outside on the patio and have the sun behind me to get any decent shots. Luckily the wifi worked inside the lodge, so I could post pics on facebook for my friend, because as soon as I left the lodge my wifi was gone again for a couple days. I was glad it worked long enough to receive the notification telling me to check out this lodge, otherwise I would have missed it.

I also liked that there were more flowers in the Tetons area, than there are in Yellowstone  but I didn’t get pictures of the flowers.

My Weekend

The weekend started when I got out of work on Sunday morning at 2am. I finally went to sleep after 4am. I woke up around 10:30 with no wifi again. The internet goes out often here.

I started to clean up my room, but then got tired again so I took a nap and missed lunch &dinner. I walked over to the pizza pub about 9pm, to buy pizza but found out that it was closed. So without wifi or pizza I just went back to bed. I really hate feeling so tired all the time.

Was in bed so much yesterday that I woke up with a stiff, sore back. Today I really need to finish cleaning my room. Why am I so worried about cleaning up, you may wonder? Well its because I need to start packing. Yeah there is something that I haven’t mentioned on facebook…I am leaving Yellowstone on July 13th.

I love seeing the bison & geysers here, but my job is harder then I expected and I assume my body can’t get used to the crazy split shift. At least I can say I lived here 2 months. Leaving should be easier now that I have a car. I will have 3 weeks to relocate SOMEWHERE in Arizona. I don’t have a definite spot picked out yet, but seeing as my drivers license is from AZ, that seemed like a good state to go.

It’s 75 degrees out today. I assume that it’s hotter in Northern AZ.

Busy Week

Since I went to the pow-wow in Cody last Saturday  (June 18th), I am on a 7-day stretch at work. Today is day #6. Just glad I get the 4th of July off. Few employees have told me to go check out Jackson & Grand Tetons for the holiday.

It’s time I should be going to lunch, but I am still sitting in my dorm wearing pj’s. Got 55 minutes to start work, so I will probably miss lunch again. I have a crazy schedule where I work 1-5 pm cleaning 1 dorm and then I work again from 10pm-2am  basically babysitting the employees in the dorm. Yesterday I was supposed to walk up to the cabins and clean 2 rooms…carrying back all the linens to my dorm to wash. Ok, someone forgot to tell  my boss that I ain’t no spring chicken.

Seeing as I need to get ready for work, I will finish my coffee and blueberries now. I will  make sure to sign up for the RC (resident coordinator ) late night snack bags, seeing as I won’t be getting lunch. Usually I get the bagel, 2 hard-boiled eggs & juice in my snack bag that I eat after midnight. Yesterday I skipped lunch & dinners and never signed up for my snack bag..which is probably why I am eating blueberries now.

 

 

Bison Season

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This big guy stepped in front of me when I was about 6 miles from home. The fog was just moving across the road. Up ahead there was a herd of bison walking up the road, which I didn’t know about at first.

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While the big guy had me stopped in traffic, I was able to watch more bison run around on the hill. There is a lighter (reddish) colored one..it’s a young baby. The babies weigh on average of 40-50 pounds at birth. Did you know that bison has 30% more protein than beef and 70% less fat.

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I was on my way home from Cody, WY. Cody has a few artsy painted bison around the city. I took this picture outside the library, where I would charge my phone up. It was my first time of being in Cody and I thought it looked like a really nice place and the scenery driving there was phenomenal.

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One of my coworkers took this picture somewhere on her trip down to the Tetons.. I loved it so much I had to save it. I have not gotten down to the Grand Tetons yet but I hope to soon.

Split shifts & Sleep

I am working 1pm-5pm and then again at 10pm-2am. So I have a guaranteed 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week schedule now. But it’s a crazy schedule to get used to. I definitely would not want this schedule in the “real world”.

I will usually go to bed around 3am, and wake up between 8-9am. I will have coffee and maybe putter around my dorm room until I go to lunch about noon. When I finish the first half of my work shift at 5pm, I will go have dinner. I must say that the lunch & dinners are better here then they were at Death Valley.

After dinner I am ready for a nap. I am now setting 5 alarms to make sure I get back up to work at 10pm. My sleep schedule got messed up once last week and I ended up being 45 minutes late for my 10-2 shift. I got written up for that and don’t  want that to happen again.

Now this weekend,  I spent time with friends so my sleep schedule is outta whack again. Which is why I am typing this post before 4am. I really should try to go back to sleep. It seems like for 5 days a week all I do is work & sleep now. EDIT: I got up to make coffee about 9:15am, so hopefully I am back to my normal schedule. But I think from now on I will only be able to go sight-seeing on 1 of my weekend days instead of both days off.

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Took that picture on Sunday, when I went riding around with friends. It was a nice day and I enjoyed hanging out with them, but it wore me out.