Well, Keith will be the first one to admit that he made a really really big mistake leaving his job at Savage. The last few months that he was there he had heard whispers of discontent, rumors about how their department wasn't making enough money doing some of the work that they do, and the headquarters in Salt Lake City were looking quite closely at the books. The work that Keith was doing was about the only money maker in the department and they were very happy with his numbers, but not so happy with the new wheel changing operation that they had started. They contracted with the railroads to send crews out to change the big wheels on the railcars out and kind of underbid themselves and aren't getting paid and are like $300,000 dollars in the hole for the quarter. The crews also would go out into the field and search out railcars on side tracks and in yards and inspect them to see if repairs were needed. One or two guys would spend all day driving up and down the central valley just kind of messing around all day, fixing what they could find, and sometimes finding nothing to fix. It always sounded like a silly way to do business to me, but that's how they did it. In the meantime Keith would be in the yard doing all the real work all by himself. And bringing in the money all by himself.
Anyway, when Keith called his supervisor Bob on Monday to let him know he was back in town and ready to go, Bob said something about having to get some paperwork together and he would call Keith back. Keith said he did sound kind of weird on the phone, like something was wrong. Well, no phone call back, so Keith called him again yesterday, left him a message, and when Bob called back he told Keith that they didn't know if they could still hire him back because of headquarters looking at the books and deciding whether or not to keep the department going. If Keith were still an actual employee, he might have lost his job anyway but at least he could get unemployment or possibly be offered a position in another department in the company.
Bob is supposed to call back next week and let Keith know for sure, but we certainly aren't going to hold our breaths hoping that by some miracle Savage will decide to keep a money losing department going. There had always been rumors that the company was going to get out of the railcar repair business so it looks like the rumors may have been true.
So, as Keith puts it, he really screwed up by leaving in the first place.
I had misgivings about him going to work for the railroad, but when they promise you better pay and benefits and Keith had been trying for the past few years to get a job with the railroad, you don't want to discourage his dream.
I asked him if he would have stuck it out if his mom being sick had not been in the back of his mind and he hadn't been worried about her, but he says it was mostly the travel and staying in motels that was the deciding factor in leaving the job, but her being on his mind didn't help. And then when Savage appeared to be welcoming him back with open arms, the decision was made.
So, he is out pounding the pavement this morning getting applications and seeing if there is even anything out there for him. You can get a welder's job pretty much anywhere here but most of them start out at like $10.00 an hour. That would just barely pay the house payment.
I'm going to put my applications in at Walmart and Target yet again, I think I've tried Target 3 times now, and Walmart 5 times now and nothing. I am convinced that they are only hiring people that have been on unemployment or welfare because they get tax breaks if they do. Unemployment is still at 12% here, and about the only jobs you ever see open are in health care. Which I'm not hardly qualified for.
So, after a good start to the year and things looking up and having survived the worst of the recession, we're kind of back starting out again.
So, come buy my sh*t, cause I really need the money.