Monday, August 27, 2007

A trip for shopping

Well this weekend was pretty uneventful. Friday I took the afternoon and did some reading and really that was it. I had the urge to go shopping so I went to the so called Mall here, but that was pretty uneventful and found nothing to buy. Went to Target couldn't find anything to fix my urge for needing to buy some things.

So after finding out that a few friends has Saturday off and no plans we took off Saturday morning for Missoula. At the time I thought this seemed very reasonable, 3 hours to Old Navy was a great idea. But yes, that is 3 hours each way. We made a great day out of it and Old Navy was having some great clearance sales so I fixed my urge for needing to buy things!!

Sunday I slept in and did some laundry and really did nothing nothing at all.

Monday was a Monday at work. Spent the day actually doing some research. Found out what kind of fees the different payday loan companies charge. Although it does pay to shop around. Some would charge as much as 60 dollars or more. That is 60 dollars for a 300 dollar advance.

A lot more work to be done this week and some more meetings. My mom gets here Wed and the plan is to take off maybe Friday and do some new site seeing. I can't wait to see more of Montana.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Northwest County Fair and Butte

Well another two weeks have gone by and it doesn't really feel like it. Two weeks ago kicked off the county fair which made for me working ALOT. I spent five days straight at the fair. We handed out over 1600 canvas bags. Those bags are quite the thing at the fair. Everybody knows that we will have them so it is one of their first stops. Although just so everybody knows they aren't as nice as last year and some men divorced their bag so they didn't need another one. Those were the two comments that always made me laugh.

I spent a lot of time talking to people about what they would like to see in a financial education course and got some good ideas.

The fair had some good parts. Ate some of the fair food, went to the rodeo and saw the Indian Relay races. The rodeo was great nobody got hurt and they have some really good riders around here. Alot of them are like in the top ten of the rodeo circuit. I am pretty sure that is a good thing. Now for Indian relay races. DANGEROUS!! To try to explain them the Indians ride bare back around the track once then as they come around they basically jump off that horse onto another. They do this for four laps. They don't even really slow down to jump off. Now if everybody stayed on the horse this would be entertaining. Although this boy feel off his horse and got ran over by a horse. Completely horrifying. He was seizuring. He went away on the ambulance. I hope that is was okay. That was the only race i saw and felt I didn't need to see anymore!!

The fair wore me out and I slept a lot after that.

This week I went back to Butte!! I really like going to Butte, some people don't really understand why, but I like it. I had some more AmeriCorp training there. Basically the different steps in starting my project. Lil went with and we got some new good ideas of some more directions that we should start taking with the project. We did a poverty simulation and I have decided that I don't want to be a single father of three kids. I was the father of my family, my 13 year old son was selling drugs, my 8 year old daughter didn't go to school, my 3 year old son went to work with me cause I couldn't afford day care, I couldn't feed my kids every week and almost got kicked out of our house. I didn't do very good living in poverty with three kids. But I am doing much better living single with the poverty thing just so people know.

For a night activity we took a bus up to the Our Lady of the Rockies. This was very very neat. She is 90 feet tall and has a white gloss paint on her to make her shine at night. It is a dirt road all the way up. You go up 3000 feet, and 14 switchbacks up and down. The lady driving never stopped on the way up. She was a great driver. We saw the richest mine also on the way up. The story was a man lost his job so while waiting for his retirement to come in he started mining a little. He had to have diesel brought in to run things, well he got behind on some of his bills so the person that was delivering went into the mine looking to collect money. He saw some glowing lights and figured that was where they were. Although he didn't find them or any gold he found marijuana plants. The owners got arrested. They had quite the supply of pot. The moral of the story was lock your mine doors and pay your bills.

Up on top they have a chapel where they hold weddings, the view is great from up there. I want to have my wedding there just for the view. No pictures in front of the Berkley pit though. My camera died so a friend is suppose to send me pictures. So when I get those I will post more pictures then what I have from my camera.

This weekend is just going to be a lazy weekend I think. My mom is coming on Tuesday will get here Wed. May find some place to go for the weekend. Any suggestions let me know. I want to try to go somewhere I haven't been yet!!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Been here for a month

Well I have been in Kalispell for a month now. My job is in full swing and is going five different directions. Which is a good so it is keeping me busy.

In a month I have done a lot already. My job has already doubled the work load. Originally I was going to be working on starting some financial literacy classes. The goal of these classes is to teach people some basic financial skills. Now added to my work load is starting a volunteer income tax assistance sites (VITA). I am really excited about this because there is some great community support for the sites and hopefully bring what the community has already done in the past and work together.

Besides working in the office I have had some time to see some different areas of Montana. My first adventure was down to Helena for my pre-service orientation. I learned a lot about what the goals are for AmeriCorp and meet some of the other Vistas from the area. We had some adventures out in the evening after some long days in class. Before I left I did a little site seeing. I went to the cathedral there. It was very beautiful with some unbelievable stain glass work. Driving to Helena was a beautiful drive. I passed so many lakes that it seemed like I turn a corner and there was a new lake.

After my time in Helena I went to Missoula on my second day of work. We had some training down there but mostly I toured the area. I wanted to check out the campus as I try to decide where I want to do my Masters at. I took a quick tour of the campus. It was very beautiful campus and much bigger then I am used to!! I also looked around town and did some window shopping in the downtown area. Missed the fact that there was an old navy in town found that out later. Might have to make a trip down there here soon. I need flip flops.

My next adventure was to Butte America. I had a two day training on ROMA there. A few people from my office went down to that. We did some site seeing as usual at night. Saw some very beautiful mansions that I would love to go back and go inside of them all. Some of the areas can be a little rough around the edges but there is so much potential in some of the homes. I enjoyed this area and had some really good Italian food.

My next adventure was suppose to be to Billings. Although my boss got sick and with all of the forest fires she didn't want me to drive by myself. About those forest fires. They are really disturbing my view of the mountains. Some days you can't see anything while other days it is clear. The smoke is starting to get to me causing me to have a headache. Everybody around here says it is not like this every year and it really isn't that hot either. So I am not sure if they are telling me the truth or just trying to make me stay here?? There is a new fire that started just over the hills from my apartment. The helicopters flew over my apartment all night last night. Although to be honest I am not really that worried. If it comes over the mountain it will be in town. And plus there are quite a few homes before me!!

I have been meeting people. Thank goodness for the gym. Went in there one day and had meet a gal that works there and she has taken me under her wing and has introduced me all around. We have been going swimming when it is hot, hanging out at night, and then on Sundays we all seem to end up at her parents house for a dinner!! So Sundays I always eat well. With meeting Elena has also lead me to my new adventure. I meet Jessica who just moved here from Texas. She was camping and is currently looking for an apartment. She has been staying with me for the past few days as camping was getting old. She starts her new job tomorrow and she hopefully have her place tomorrow also. Been nice to have a little company the past few days. Although I still like having my own space.

So this has been pretty much my last month living in Kalispell. Sharlee convinced me to keep a blog of my time here. Now she is probably smart cause now everybody can keep up with my life here. Now I just have to remember to write on it.

This next week brings some new adventures of some classes, kiwanis and the Northwest County fair, rodeo, and Indian relay races. Should be some fun times this next week.