Independence

Had a busy day in the gift shop. Some people were disappointed that there was not going to be any fireworks at Mt Rushmore. I was told that there hasn’t been any fireworks at the memorial since 2009. I will admit that even I was disappointed, not that it really matter because I was to tired from working and I will have another long 11 hour day again today.

Even though I am still working for Xanterra, just like I did at the Grand Canyon, I will get no holiday pay here. We also don’t get overtime pay unless we work 48 hours in a week. I am only scheduled for 46 hours. So I will add that to the list of reasons not to come back next year.

Today is Nick Clifford’s 94th birthday. Nick is the last surviving carver who worked on Mt Rushmore. He was probably the youngest carver also because he started when he was only 17 years old. I assume he never worried about overtime or holiday pay. I also assume that you could not find any 17 year old today that would climb up & down that mountain every day either. Now-a-days to many kids are more worried about fast cars, watching dumb tv shows, or their many electronic gadgets. Nick’s favorite president was Lincoln…not sure if that’s his favorite just out of the 4 on the mountain or his overall favorite of all the presidents we have had.

Yesterday I was ringing up a couple at the register, where the lady wanted to pay for her own stuff. She turned to 1 guy and told him “It’s independence day” but when I gave her the total price, she had to turn to another older guy to ask for his credit card. I smiled at the first guy and said…”Not quite independent yet”.

Later in the day we had a little boy come up to the registers crying his little heart out because he lost his parents. I have no idea how long he had been looking for them, but it did not take us long to find them. While looking for his parents, another dad came to the registers saying he lost his daughter. How do you lose your kid in a gift shop??? Either those kids are determined to be independent going off on their own (before they are ready) or we need to sell brain cells for the parents….maybe both.

Personally my own independence day is in August. Why??? Because I first got my driver’s license on August 11th and then years later I also got divorced on August 11th. I couldn’t get any more independent then that. I could drive around going anywhere I wanted, without asking some guy’s permission first or having to put up with the third-degree later. So I also declare August 11th as my own Independence day.

I just wish I could figure out how to be independent enough to not have to worry about getting ready to work an 11-hour day for someone else. But I saw today’s schedule so I already know that I am working in the gold jewelry dept with Kerry…so hopefully it will be an easier day compared to yesterday. Kerry is an older English lady married to an American guy.

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