Friday, February 25, 2005
Appreciate your package!
United Postal Service: I couldn't hack it.
When I was eighteen, a friend of mine dragged me along with her to apply for work at the UPS warehouse 20 minutes from my house. My friend's mom had convinced her that UPS was the greatest place to work because it had the greatest benefits. My friend didn't want to go alone and because I needed a job and thought it would be cool to work with my friend, I went along with her to apply.
We got the job and were so excited. I have no idea why we were excited, but my best guess is because we felt all grown up with a real job. I think that I mostly ACTED excited for the sake of my friend who was trying to please her mom. We were to work every morning from four until eight or nine (if we didn't work fast enough). We thought that this work schedule was IDEAL because we could get work overwith and spend our days on the beach....we we were wrong. We also thought that our work would provide a FREE work-out, which was true.
This was not an ideal work schedule for two girls between their freshman and sophomore years of college. We couldn't stay out late or then we wouldn't be able to get up. And, it was summer time when the possibilities of things to do at night in Southern California are endless. We were also WAY too tired after work to do anything but go back to bed.
So, I just want to fill you in on what UPS workers do so that you can appreciate your package when it comes to your door. First, I would drive down the freeway half asleep in the dark; it was a good thing that there were no other cars on the road, so that when I swerved across three lanes it didn't really matter. Then, we would line up and be assigned a partner and a truck. It was then our JOB to UNLOAD the whole trailer bed of the parked semi. No, not in our four hour shift, but in ONE hour. Two people to one truck.
You open the door and you literally look at a wall of cardboard. All different kinds and sizes. You start hauling them down the conveyer belt, sweating within the first ten minutes. You get so EXCITED when it is a small package, but when you lift it, to your utter dissapointment, you need both hands because it is filled with either all gold or steel. Then, you gear up for the HUGE box and you wonder who in the world would have a refrigerator delivered via UPS, and to the MOST wonderful delight, it is as light as a feather.
The worse kind of packages that I ran into were the ones that were marked...LIVE ANIMALS. They had little holes in the side of the box that were lined with little metal screens. One time I finally got the gumption to look inside.....to my relief, it was just a bunch of crickets. I probably would have quit on the spot if it was mice. (I have this thing about mice)
So, I work and work my butt off. One thing that I do give my parents credit for is teaching their children to be HARD workers. I would be so happy to maybe have a ten minute break, when my nameless friend would come running over begging me to help her catch up...she weighed less than 100 lbs. and was really out of shape. Of course, I was the nice friend and went and helped her too.
I was relieved when my friend quit after her second day. I would no longer have to help her. What I didn't realize is that she wouldn't be in the car to keep me awake on the drive. Once she was gone, it took the pressure off of me to keep the job, and after a good 8 days, I jumped off of the UPS ship, also.
But, now, I really appreciate my packages whenever they are delivered.