Its spring, the air is chilly, the sleep is not yet out. The thin air still holds lot of water from the rain. The grass is green and lively to the eyes which is used to the white and dead snow. I wake up, I have my quick breakfast and here I go. In the 1st year, on a bicycle, and by walking in the second year.
The moist campus is all wet. Tom is waiting outside. Clock just turned seven. Inside the shack and there it is, the warmth. Hot water and a short 5 minute nap are all so coveted.
“Let’s go guys”
The phrase everyone imitates, sometimes ridiculed, mostly hated..
We walk out, it may be windy, chilly or both. Doesn’t matter, Here we are, mechanically taking out the ladders, then the extension ladders, the glass cleaners, sponges, paper towels, the five or six long hoses, the tuckers and finally the black box which the black sheep gets to carry.
On we are, in the van and the truck, roaming around campus. For the job we hate, the company we love. The windows we clean. We are the window washers.
Sometimes, there are anti- Govt graffiti, loads of bird poop, impossibly high windows. but mostly its fun. As soon as we unload the stuff, the assignment of work is always fun. On that day, who gets to do tuckering, who is with Ivo, who got the shitty job etcetera, who gets to be far from Tom, who gets the shade, who goes inside on bad weather, and who gets the beautiful Montana sun on a sunny day. It all get decided there though its subject to change.
Something we all know is the location of rest rooms in each of the building this wide campus houses. It is very useful even when you are not part of the crew and just on the move from one part of the campus to the other. Also, we all know where the water fountains are, where the vending machines are and where the microwaves are. This is true to all the floors in all the buildings..
It is an awesome job, I will definitely miss. You wake up early, you eat light, you drink tons of water, you are in sun, you get paid. I have seen so many envious people who wanted to trade jobs with us. You get fit like hell, you lose your chubbiness, You are all brawny now. I got my six pack window washing (not just that, coz not all who window wash has siz packs. ). The good part, its over mid day, then you can run, play soccer, have beer, and in the end sleep really really really well. Like a baby, literally like a baby. Without dreams or disturbances.
I started writing the draft in the spring, its summer now. A very selfish part of me is glad that there is no window washing this year. A job I miss, I have written twice over the kind of company and conversations I enjoy in that blue collar job. It taught me a lot of things. I will possibly never enjoy a job like that. The physically intense job has lots of little nuance which I will never get back. There are few other reasons which I enjoyed the job. Well some other time.