Sunday, November 18, 2012

Attrition

Not surprisingly after 6 weeks a number of people who had the same start date we did have raised the white flag, pulled up anchor and moved on to greener pastures.  I just don't think it is possible for some to understand how physically demanding this Amazon gig is.  The fact we are still here can mean one of several things......A) We are too stupid to know we cant' do this,  B) We are masochists,  C) We love Kentucky winters, and why not work at Amazon, too?, or D) All of the above.  Seriously, there are times around midnight each work day when I feel still feel good, and think the last 5 weeks will be a breeze, but then 3am comes and my feet are barking at me, my eyes are crossing, my mind won't focus, and both my hands are cramping......then, then I wonder how I can do this for 5 more weeks.  It's the last hour that gets you every time.

Saturday night/Sunday morning marked the end of 6 weeks on the job at Amazon.  Seems hard to believe that much time has passed......this is the longest we have sat in one place since Spokane where we spent 5 weeks........we still have 5 weeks to go before we roll the Newell tires again.

As I walk up and down miles of isles picking products that may have just been ordered online minutes before, my mind drifts to some of the great places we have visited  in the almost 10 months we have been nomads.  The mind has a way of distracting us from the sometime unpleasant present by taking us to "happier" places we have been, or the promise of "happier" places in the near future.  It is one of my coping mechanisms to pass the time.  Boredom is as big an enemy as the physical punishment our bodies are taking.  Boredom makes the second hand slow way down, and makes the 3am to 4am hour seem like 4 hours.  According to my calculations TLE and I  each "pick" between 4 and 5,000 individual items every four day work week, so that means collectively we have picked between 50 and 60,000 individual items since we started working, and we are just 2 of hundreds doing our specific job 24 hours a day at just this one facility.....I think in Kentucky alone there are 4, or 5 of these facilities.  I wish I could take a picture of the interior of the Amazon facility, but phones, cameras, and electrical devices of any kind are not allowed inside.  Mind you, the floor square footage is 1,000,000, but all three buildings have 4 levels covering around 40% of that square footage.

Last Sunday I ordered a new pair of Keen hiking shoes, and some honey TLE wanted, and those two orders, coming from other Amazon facilities were in our hands by Tuesday morning.  Someone just like me picked those items, put them in a "tote", then on a conveyor belt, which took them to someone sitting at a packing station, who put them in boxes, and mailed them to me......amazing.....no, Amazon!

We go back to work for our 7th week of self induced punishment on Wednesday, but between now and then my feet are elevated, I nap on and off, and I cherish every minute of down time between now and then.  Before we know it we will be sitting on the beach in Cedar Key, and our sojourn here will become a fading memory briefly revived each time we spend one of the dollars we earned here on fuel, or craft beer, or whatever may strike our fancy.  Now back to the game!

Thanks for stopping by!

2 comments:

  1. E) Years of biking & staying in great shape.

    After reading all your blogs, I would probably be gone the first day!

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  2. Hahaha! I'm trying to paint a realistic picture of the experience. Maybe I'm making it seem to grim? It is hard, but overall we are enjoying ourselves, and making new friends. The jury is still out on whether we would do it again, though.

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