So Ralph got a job....it's a one year contract, which is great. The only downside is that the job is in Alaska. So he left on Thursday and is currently in Canada, at Prince Rupert and today he gets on the ferry that will take him to Juneau.
I sometimes wonder if people who have pretty safe jobs even realize that there is a recession going on. I know this, people are shocked when they get laid off and then even more shocked when they realize how hard it is to get a job right now. See, even if a company is doing all right, they aren't hiring. People hear on the news that the unemployment rate in CA is what....10%, 11%? But do they realize what that translates to in actual people who want to work who are just unable to find a job?
Ralph retired from the Coast Guard in January, 2008. He would have liked to stay in, he was on active duty for the last 8 years, but he had too many years in, so he had to retire. In 2008, he worked a total of 5 months after retiring. By the way, we get no retirement benefits. He was in the CG for 34 years, but only 15 of those were active duty, so no retirement benefits until he is 60.
So he went up to Alaska last year for 5 months, the only work he could find. Then he came home and tried to find something locally. After about 6 months, he realized that there was nothing going on locally, so he broadened his search nationally. Finally, he found another job in Alaska.
Construction, especially large construction projects, are just not happening right now in CA. And even if they are getting funded, there are so many people lining up for those few jobs that it's pretty near impossible to get one.
We are very lucky in that we always have lived the life of saving. Always lived below our means and socked money into the bank. We have no debt, except our mortgage. I wonder how many people can say that, after having the breadwinner out of work for a year? That doesn't mean it's been easy. It hasn't been. But we made it. And now we have income again. And now we'll start to replenish our depleted savings accounts.
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