For the past three months in Dickinson, I leave home to drive more than an hour to work in the dark, I work for twelve hours, then I drive for more than an hour home from work in the dark. When I get home from work, I eat, then I go to sleep for about seven hours, then it is time for me to wake up to go back to work.
The driving and working, which adds up to a little over fourteen hours each day, is somewhat tiring. The weather, the snow and ice, the extreme cold, my problems, and my co-workers’ problems, make everything more tiring, it makes it exhausting.
One of my co-workers this winter, he hit a deer on the way to work which totaled his mini-van. Next, this same co-worker, driving a borrowed vehicle, he hit a snow drift across the road on the way to work, and he damaged his borrowed vehicle. One week later, this co-worker hit another deer on the way to work, and he totaled his borrowed vehicle.
Very often, the roads are slick and covered with ice and snow. Due to the North Dakota winds which are nearly constant on the barren prairie, the snow is driven in flurries and drifts across the road, which reduce visibility, and make it hard to see deer and snow drifts on the road when driving.
Me and my co-workers, we just hope that we don’t have car problems. Today, when the temperature was -17 degrees Fahrenheit, and the Wind Chill effect was -40 degrees Fahrenheit, my female co-worker’s truck battery went dead, while she was running her truck. It wasn’t her truck alternator, the alternator tested O.K., it was her truck battery.
Eight weeks ago while I was at work, after I had worked my scheduled twelve hours, I had to continue working for another twelve hours because someone quit, and during this second twelve hours, the alternator on my truck quit working. My co-workers helped me change my alternator, I was very cold and tired, and my co-workers did 60%-70% of the work, my hands couldn’t feel the bolts, and especially not the screws.
In a recent previous blog post, I wrote about “My $1,000 trip to the Killdeer Mountains” on Christmas Eve, where I cut and destroyed one new tire, destroyed the spare tire, and had to get my truck towed back to Dickinson for a $500 tow fee. In another recent previous blog post, I wrote about the Dickinson Police ticketing my vehicle and my neighbor’s vehicle, and having my neighbor’s vehicle towed away. After one week, the tow fees on my neighbor’s vehicle were $405, and he was never able to get his vehicle back.
The way things are in Dickinson, with work, with Winter, the ice, snow, extreme cold, dangerous driving conditions, vehicle problems, and the Dickinson Police, not only is there no desire on my part to go anywhere, it is in fact too costly and too dangerous to try to go anywhere.
Is there anywhere in Dickinson to go, or worth going to, like a nice, enjoyable restaurant? The answer is no. Do I want to drive to Bismarck, the State Capitol one hundred miles to the east? No.
The work, the cold, the dark, ice and snow, it is very bleak living in Dickinson, North Dakota.
On the internet, when I see videos of the cities and suburbs in the South and Southwest, places like Tampa, Orlando, Atlanta, Dallas, and Phoenix, there is no way that I want to live like that, like rats and roaches crawling on top of each other, where people have hardly any personal space to themselves.
The only thing good about North Dakota, is that there are very few people, because no one wants to live here.