August 20th 1981

posted in: Innocents Abroad | 2
Val, Mrs Hoare, Chickie and Chris enjoying a joke

A real treat this morning – Steve brought us tea in bed.  Then, 5 of us – all bar Mr Hoare – drove into town.  Steve + his mum were hunting for gifts, Chickie had to chase round various offices on behalf of her dad, + Val + I were looking for a job.  We tried first at an Italian restaurant, which was advertising for staff, but they had filled those jobs (at least that was what she said – we were a little suspicious.)  We then tried a big hotel, the Baranof, but as soon as they gave us a form which asked if we had a visa for working in the US, we folded it up + walked out.  We spent quite a bit of time waiting in the Post Office to buy some stamps (some things don’t change from country to country), and then decided to try + find the others – otherwise it would mean a long wait, + then a bus ride.  We seemed to spend ages wandering up + down, but eventually ran into Chickie.  I popped back + bought some English Breakfast tea from a nice little store there, and when I got back the whole gang was assembled.  Chickie still had things to do, but the rest of us looked in one or two more shops, then drove back – we weren’t sorry to do so, as Val + I were feeling rather depressed, + the weather matched us.  We both rode out to a café which was advertising for staff, but the manager wasn’t there at that time; we would have to return.  Val decided to ride in to the Motor Vehicle office to try to sort out our documents – I came home, + lent Steve a bit of moral support in some skirting board he was cutting.  Val appeared shortly after – the wind had been so strong that at one time she was travelling backwards, so she’d given up.  And then, in the evening, we bought pizza for everyone.  I called the local pizza restaurant and ordered 2 of their largest + best, + went + picked it up 20 mins later.  Oh yes, earlier we had returned to the café, and it seemed quite promising, except the place they were advertising for staff wasn’t built yet.  Ho hum.

In the evening, we played cards again – this time Steve was very depressed, I think worried about the baby, which was upside down.  I said we would leave in about a week, being jobless, and they didn’t seem too displeased – that made me feel pretty black for the night.

 Right – I’d better address that final sentence first.  Can only apologise; the thought that I should not have recognised that this was a special time for Steve and Chickie and we just needed to clear off does make me cringe.  Have to say, I don’t know what we were doing looking for work in Juneau in any case.  Were we expecting to live with S + C?  And the baby?  And nice a place though Juneau was, it was not really a sensible place to stay for any time with winter on its way.

Also want to comment on that whole wandering around, looking for one another thing.  Impossible to contemplate nowadays, but in those days it happened all the time, despite one’s best strategies to get around it – arranging rendezvous, keeping to deadlines…  Who bothers with any of that nowadays, when everyone is in touch all the time?

2 Responses

  1. Pamela J Blair

    I don’t remember the exact quote, but it’s something I think Ben Franklin said: “Fish and houseguests tend to smell after four days.” Sounds like the (mis)quote might fit here.

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