Friday, August 11, 2017


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8:02 am - Friday - August 11th - 49º F, humidity 66%, wind 3 mph out of the east clouds, but very, very hazy from fires in the area....forecast high for Gardiner, MT is 77º F, and 75º F for Mammoth Hot Springs, WY.....another payday today!

Since October 1, 2012 I have been writing a daily blog.....some 1,801 entries over that span of time....I have never missed a day, even when I was in the hospital recovering from emergency double hernia surgery on February 10, 2014!  Some days I sit down at my laptop to begin writing and there is nothing there.....writer's block strikes again......I don't know what to write about the prior day's activities that might seem even remotely interesting to anyone other than my children.  This is one of those days....I have been sitting here since 8:02 am (see above) and now it is 8:55 am and I have only just finished most of this first paragraph.  It's not that Thursday was that uneventful, or boring.....the inspiration.....the words just seem to elude moi.  When this happens, and it happens very infrequently, I just start writing and hope it goes far this is where it has gone, and I am still trying to link two coherent thoughts together.......

......we had the 'MID1' shift Thursday which has us arriving at the Mammoth Hot Springs General Store around 10:50 am in time for our 11 am start time.   We arrive to a very quiet store.....only Linda and Barbara (they always work the 'OPEN' shift which begins at 7:15 am) are the 'Fountain'.  I check the daily duty schedule which lets me know I will be pulling my cash drawer this day......good....I will not be just an ice cream scooper this day.  I haven't written much about my cash drawer and the process I go through when I do pull my drawer, so here goes.

We have this safe deposit box set up......literally.  It requires two keys to open my box, just like in a bank.  I have one key, and there is a second key hanging on a chain for everyone to use in conjunction with their personal key.  After opening my assigned box (325) I pull out he drawer which is exactly like one you would find in a bank.  Even though I 'counted down' my drawer when I last used it, I will count the cash (coins, paper money) again to make sure I did not make a mistake when I 'counted down' the previous time I was a cashier.  When we are first given our cash drawer at the beginning of our employment it contains $300 in pennies, nickles, dimes, quarters, 1's, 5's, 10's and 20's.  Each time I count down the drawer I must be sure it contains exactly $300.....all the rest of the money goes into a clear zippered bag which is put in a 'drop box' to be retrieved at some point by the central office folks.  The first few times I 'counted down' I was off anywhere from $10-$30 was very frustrating, because it seems so simple.  My problem, I determined, was that I was trying to do it too quickly.  Once I just settled down and was willing to count it 10 times if necessary I began to do much better, and now rarely am I off in my count, and if I am it is usually less than plus, or minus a dollar.  

Counting your drawer accurately is just one thing you must learn if you are a must also gauge how much of each denomination you need to get through a shift without having to call for change more than once, or twice.  I have learned that I need at least $2 in pennies, $100 in 10's, $100 in 5's, $10 in dimes, and $20 in quarters to begin my shift.  I can usually get through an entire shift without calling for change, but once in a while I will have to get change once.  So, before I begin my shift I 'buy' the change I think I'll need for my shift.  Over the course of a shift I would say about 50% of my transactions are via credit/debit cards (Visa, Mastercard, Discovery, AmEx).  As time has gone forward I have gotten pretty good at making change quickly and accurately, and the job has gotten to be second nature to me.

When I wasn't acting as cashier I was serving hot dogs, chili, nachos, sodas and scooping ice cream.  When we are busy, which is most of the time, time flies, but there are the 'unbusy' times when the clock seems to be going backwards......:-)......just like any job.

Just like Amazon, Delaware North offers a bonus at the end of your employment if you have completed your contract, meaning you did not leave before the date you originally promised to work until.  Their bonus is $3 per day worked, and if you work past September 4th the bonus goes up to $6 per day for the additional days worked beyond September 4th.  Amazon gives you $1 per hour worked over the course of your employment if you complete your contract.

7 pm came quickly once again, and there we were heading down the 7% grades of the Gardiner River gorge to our home.  I spent a couple of hours watching some of the PGA golf tournament which started Thursday, which I recorded using our DVR, and was in bed a little after 10 pm.

There, I guess once I got the words flowing it came together pretty quickly.....thanks for your patience, and for stopping by!

When you need to buy something from Amazon, think of us.......we will appreciate every purchase you make using our Amazon Affiliate link, and  remember, using our link will not add one penny to your purchase, plus we will receive a small commission.


  1. That can be an issue when you post every day but looks like you found you way around it.

  2. Well I have been there to read everyone of your 1801 entries and have enjoyed traveling with you all. I can really understand the problem that you must have writing every day to make it interesting for your readers. All I can say is that you do keep me interested in your travels because it reminds me of some of the places that I have been in my life. The first time I visited Yellowstone was in August of 1947 and we were in a travel trailer that my parents had purchased while my dad attended Colorado A&M in Ft Collins and we made a trip to Yellowstone before we tore the TT to Rapid City, SD to deliver it to the couple who had bought it before we returned to our home in Louisiana. I have been traveling every since.

    1. Thank you Mike for your loyalty! It is appreciated!


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