I am writing these two blog posts, Part I & Part II, about having to leave North Dakota and go work or look for work out of state because this information is necessary now. There are very few job openings in western North Dakota right now. I spent this Labor Day weekend in Watford City, and it was like a ghost town. On Sunday and Monday, the long drive into town on 25 mph Hwy 23 Business, I might have seen one or two other vehicles
In my previous blog post, Part I, I wrote that I recommend taking a truck or SUV out of state instead of a car if you are able, because you will be safer in a larger vehicle. I wrote that you should have some kind of sturdy trunk or lock box, chained to a car seat. You are going to need to take your social security card, birth certificate, laptop computer, check books, firearm, and extra cash with you, so you had better have a lock box to put things in, and one that a thief can’t break your vehicle window and take.
I also wrote in my previous blog post, Part I, that you should plan on sleeping in your vehicle while you are traveling to get where you are going, rather than trying to stay in a motel every night. Once you get to where you are going, you had better be constantly observing what kind of neighborhood you are in. Before you get to where you are going, you need to look at a map closely and make note of all the little towns that surround where you are going.
For instance, surrounding Dallas there are the smaller suburbs of Euless, Richland Hills, Westlake, White Settlement, Watauga, and many others. Some of the areas around Dallas are really bad, and you needed to know where they were so you could avoid them, or if you drove into a bad area accidentally, you would know how to get back to a safe area. At first, not knowing my way around Dallas, I stayed in an extended stay motel about twenty miles north of Dallas in the smaller college town of Denton.
If I ever have to go to work in a big city again, I would try to stay at an older mom & pop motel a good ways outside of the city. The new extended stay motels that have been built in and around cities for workers that are just arriving or only staying for a couple of months, they cost about $700 per week, $2,800 per month, which is too much, especially if you don’t have a job.
An older mom & pop motel outside of a city will probably cost less, and if you explain to the owners or managers what you are trying to do, and you do what you said you were going to do, find a job, the owners understand that you are not there to party or deal drugs, and can be very reasonable on weekly rent. I stayed at a mom & pop motel owned by a Korean husband & wife in Colorado for several months, and at a mom & pop motel owned by a Mormon husband & wife in Arizona for several months. The motel owners were always there, they knew what was going on, who everyone was, and it was very safe, secure, and inexpensive compared to new extended stay motels, or apartments.
Yes, I stayed at older mom & pop motels for months. I really enjoyed staying there. I was in a new city, I didn’t know what the city was like, what the people were like, where I would find a job. But I didn’t have to worry about high rent, rent deposit, a lease, or utilities. When I did start a new job, I knew when managers or co-workers started acting pushy or crazy, “O.K., start acting crazy, I don’t care, I’ll just leave.” And I could just leave.
I mentioned in my previous blog post that you do not want to bring your wife, girlfriend, or children with you when you go to work out of state. At first while traveling, you will be sleeping in your vehicle to save time and money. Then, when you get to where you are going, you need to find an older mom & pop motel, and explain to the managers or owners what you are doing, your family is back home, you are by yourself. Your wife or girlfriend would not want to stay in an older motel outside of a city. Your wife or girlfriend may think that you need to get an apartment. No! Absolutely Not!
When you have to go to work away from home, your financial outlook is probably not good. You need to quickly find a job, spend as little money as possible, and start saving money. When you begin a new job, management and co-workers may not like you. You may not be smart enough, knowledgeable enough, quick enough, good enough, or well liked. You could lose your job in a week, or a month, and not ever see it coming. So save your money, spend as little money as possible. Do not sign an apartment lease! You have no idea what is going to happen with your employment. Let your wife and children stay back in North Dakota if at all possible. Depending on what happens in the first city that you try, you may have to try to find work in a different city, or in a different state.