This has been by far the most unpleasant Winter of my life, here in Dickinson, North Dakota. This past mid-November through mid-January 2017, has been almost as bad as being in prison.
In year 2016, I had three jobs at the same time. The first was Sunday through Wednesday for 48 hours, the second was Thursday through Saturday for about another 16 hours, and the third was self employment work that I could fit in on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Year 2016 was the most money that I ever made.
It is not that I don’t have money this Winter, it is that I don’t have very much to do, or anywhere to go, here in Dickinson.
In Florida in the Winter, no one’s life shut down. You could still go to the beach to walk, lay in the sun, roller blade, run, wind surf, ride your bike. You could still golf, play tennis, go boating, go fishing. At night there were all different kinds of good restaurants to go to, all different kinds of night clubs, and bars. You would meet people in every profession, from every state, different countries, a huge variety of people.
In Arizona in the Winter, not many people’s life shut down. Where I lived, in the Winter people went skiing down the mountain and cross country skiing. You could still hike on the south faces of some mountains, or you could drive to Sedona to hike which was twenty degrees warmer. In Arizona, like Florida, you could fill your day with fun outdoor activities, and look forward to going out at night, eating at good restaurants, meeting interesting people, socializing at different bars.
In Tampa, I looked forward to going to eat at a Thai restaurant where the waitresses were very beautiful young Thai women in dresses with long black hair down to their hips, who were very pleasant, friendly, and polite. The food was excellent. I could have eaten at the Columbia restaurant in the old Cuban section of town, Ybor City, and then gone to several of the twenty night clubs in the old buildings and warehouses.
On most Friday or Saturday nights I would drive across Tampa Bay to Clearwater on the Gulf of Mexico to go to the bars and nightclubs. The Turtle Club was built out over the water, the Beach Bar was right on Clearwater Beach. There were many successful business people, celebrities, professional football players, baseball players, and hockey players in Tampa, Clearwater, and St. Pete. There were many beautiful girls and women that would get dressed up when they went out, trying to get attention and look better than all the other women.
After I had lived in Florida and Arizona and was older, I was ready to settle down for a quieter and less expensive life in Idaho. In Idaho, the Mormons were fairly pleasant and decent people, but not glamorous, not extravagant, not partiers. Idaho was more dull, but I was ready for that. In the Winter in Idaho, in the small town where I lived, I looked forward to going to the hardware store, the grocery store, the printer, Artic Circle, and Fiesta Ole, because they had very good looking friendly young ladies working there. The young women were friendlier than was for their own good, they were as friendly as puppies.
In Idaho, I would fill my day doing ordinary things, my self employment work, vehicle repair, home maintenance, errands, shopping, going to the gym, going to restaurants, going to bars. I was never bored or lonely. There was never a day that I did not have more than several things that I looked forward to doing.
I came to North Dakota in 2011 to make money. It has been pretty bad, living here, working here, just existing here. There is not one restaurant, one fast food restaurant, bar, store, location, or destination that I look forward to going to. The majority of women who are from Dickinson, have been raised to be mean and unfriendly, to not take care of their health and appearance, and their lack of education and ignorance makes them tremendously unaware of how primitive and nearly savage like they are. The women from out of state who came to work here in Dickinson, are the trashy, drug addict, mentally ill women from places like Seattle, Portland, Coeur d’Alene, Boise, Rapid City, because they could get a job here with no background check or concern that there was something wrong with them.
When I first came to Dickinson in 2011, several years before there was any indication that the Oil Boom would be over by 2015, there were many different types of men that came to Dickinson, any kind or category of men that you could think of. Though many of them were broke, poor, stupid, or incompetent, there was widespread enthusiasm and optimism amongst them. The enthusiasm and optimism among the men, and some of these men actually being intelligent, talented, competent, and educated, made Dickinson much more positive, upbeat, fun, and entertaining.
As more and more of the people that had arrived in Dickinson came to a more accurate and realistic understanding of how things were in Dickinson, the great enthusiasm and optimism went away. I believe that the intelligent, talented, and educated men were the first to leave Dickinson because they could clearly see how things were going to be, and what was going on. If you were a truck driver, rig hand, roustabout, equipment operator, or electrician, and you were willing to work twelve hours per day, seven days a week, you would make a lot of money in overtime. But, you would have 30% of this money taken out in taxes, you would risk getting killed or injured every day, you would be filthy dirty all the time, you would be cold most of the time, you would pay $1,800 per month for a small apartment, there was no place to eat, there were no attractive women, …does this make any sense? No, for people that were intelligent, talented, educated, or competent, there were other places in the world to work that they could think of.
When the Oil Boom went away in 2015, the employers in Dickinson let their worst and most troublesome employees go first, if they had a choice. I have said before that the people that kept their jobs were the most competent and dependable employees. What you have now in Dickinson are mostly dependable truck drivers, mechanics, equipment operators, welders, and electricians, who are older and settled. But the enthusiasm and optimism is gone from the workers in Dickinson. Many workers wonder when their job will end, and they look at what they have, and what they owe, and they can’t believe that’s all there is.
Throughout Dickinson, the women are unfriendly and unattractive, the local people are both angry about the Oil Boom and at the same time angry that it is over, the workers are not enthusiastic or optimistic about their jobs or being here in Dickinson, there is very little to do, and no where to go.