I am writing this blog post in response to a black reader’s comments about considering moving to Dickinson, North Dakota from the South. This advice is for normal Black People who are considering moving to Dickinson, North Dakota. I have separate advice for the Black Men that are needed in Dickinson to impregnate as many White Women as possible, in order to change things in Dickinson, which I have written about several times in recent previous blog posts.
I am writing this blog post on December 31, 2016. In this month of December, this has been the worst weather that I have seen in Dickinson in the four years that I have lived here. On one night this December, the temperature got down to -27 degrees Fahrenheit. In the past two weeks, there have been blizzard conditions several times, with very high winds, snow blowing sideways with zero visibility, roads and highways being blocked with snow, and electric power failures.
It would have been very, very dangerous for any newcomer to have arrived in Dickinson this December, and it may still be this dangerous in January and February. What do I mean by dangerous? I have a very, very good four wheel drive vehicle with new heavy tread tires, and I have nearly gotten stuck very bad several times recently, in the middle of a four lane highway. Even though the highways are plowed, the deep snow drift mounds came right back.
Last night driving home on a four lane 55 mph highway, I came up to two stopped vehicles in the middle of the road. They were both local people. A Ford Taurus was stuck in the middle of the road. I got my tow strap out, and my neighbor who had stopped, used his truck, which was heavier than mine, to pull the Ford Taurus back down the road. It was 15 degrees Fahrenheit, with 35 mph wind, windchill made it like -5 degrees. We all knew where we were. The Ford Taurus went back the other way. My neighbor who is a very experienced truck driver, equipment operator, and mechanic, continued north ahead of me and got stuck. I was very surprised that he got himself unstuck. Then I nearly got stuck, and barely made it.
I had a half of tank of gas, thermal underwear on, heavy winter jacket, heavy sleeping bag, tow strap, knew exactly where I was, where the nearest houses were, a telephone, and knew who I could call, what tow company I could call, and how long it would take for them to get there. It would have been very dangerous for a non-local person to be in this same situation. A non-local person could have died of hypothermia by walking in the wrong direction to get help, not knowing where they were.
I do not recommend to any person from the South, to try to move to Dickinson, North Dakota in December, January, or February, because it would be too difficult, and too dangerous. If you tried to fly in, there were many days this December that a plane would not have been able to land or take off. You would have likely been stuck in Denver or Minneapolis for days, trying to get here to Dickinson by airplane.
I recommend not trying to relocate to Dickinson until late March at the earliest, April would be even better. Now, would be a good time to start looking at the internet websites “North Dakota Job Service”, Indeed.com, and Careerbuilder.com for job advertisements. Look at these three websites at least twice a week, so that you can get an understanding of how frequently jobs are posted, how long they are posted, and how soon they appear to be filled.
If you look at the three job advertisement websites in January and February, you will see a few job advertisements for floor hands on drill rigs, work over rig hands, wireline operator, frac operator, pumper, crane operator, roustabout, tank battery installer, swamper. If you don’t already know what each of these jobs are, you need to look them up, because there is a lot to know about each of these oil field jobs.
The most difficult oil field physical jobs are floor hands and work over rig hands, and you will absolutely not be able to do these jobs unless you have great physical endurance and no physical defect. You will not likely even be considered for these two jobs unless you are under 30 years old, unless you are experienced, then you could be up to 35 years old. Slightly less physically demanding are frac operator, roustabout, tank battery installer, and swamper. If you are in good physical shape, you would be considered if you are under 40 years old.
If you are older, and have oil field experience, you would hope to get a pumper job or crane operator job, because they are not constantly physically demanding. Only a very level-headed, intelligent, fast learner, alert, physically in shape person, with a commercial drivers license will be considered for wireline operator.
The jobs listed above are the commonly advertised oil field jobs that do not normally require any formal education. You might also see a job advertisement for instrumentation and controls, health & safety, or engineer, which require both education and experience.
All of the oil field jobs that I have listed above pay between $16 to $30 per hour in the Dickinson area. If you ever heard about people making a lot of money in the oil field, it was because they worked a tremendous amount of overtime hours every week. Seven, twelve hour days, every week, for months at a time, was not uncommon during the Oil Boom. It was not optional. If you didn’t want to work twelve hours a day, every day, for weeks, then your employer would seek to replace you.
But the Oil Boom is over in North Dakota, for now. I wrote that you needed to look at the internet job websites at least twice a week in January and February so that you could get an idea how often the oil field jobs are advertised, how long they are advertised, and how soon they appear to be filled. It is my impression lately, that there are some oil field jobs, but not many. I believe that the competition for the oil field jobs that are advertised right now is moderate, because so many oil field workers have moved away. I believe that there are some experienced applicants living here locally for every oil field job that is advertised, making it a little difficult for a person with no prior experience in that position.
Before you try to move to Dickinson, I would contact the employers that are placing job advertisements to see what they have to say, both by e-mail, and by telephone. Are they positive, and encouraging to you, or are they mean, and assholes? I would not, I repeat, I would not move to Dickinson at this time, meaning Spring, if I could not get an offer of employment from at least two or three employers. There is not very much to offer in Dickinson at this time, unless you have a job here that pays quite a bit more than what you are currently making where you are now.
If you can get several offers of employment, that offer the rate of pay you want, the hours you want, at a job that you can physically do, it might be worth it to move to Dickinson if the pay will be quite a bit more than what you can make where you are now. But you need to talk to the employers first, and get several offers, because people lie and will trick you. Don’t drive all the way to Dickinson because one person tricked you.
There are about at least 500 newly completed, never lived-in apartments in Dickinson that were built for the Oil Boom, then the Oil Boom went away by the end of 2015. Real estate agents and leasing agents have some good deals on housing right now in Dickinson, but you will have to check many places to make sure you are getting the best housing deal.
I still recommend to anyone considering moving to Dickinson, that the husband or primary income earner come to Dickinson by themselves. Stay in an inexpensive motel with a weekly rate or get a monthly rate. (Avoid the least expensive motel in Dickinson). Try out your new job for a month or two. It is O.K. to let your employer know that you are searching for a home for your family that is close to schools, or that your family is staying behind until school gets out for the summer. Don’t get into a year lease before you know if your job is going to work out. Don’t move your family here until you know that your job is going to work out. Try to save as much money as you can for the first two months of your new job.
That is enough for this blog post on advice to normal black people moving to Dickinson. I urge caution and wariness, and to look into everything thoroughly. Read more of my blog posts. I don’t want anyone to feel like nobody told them what it was going to be like here.