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April 11, 2005 / TildeWill

NAS Day 1: I’m New Here

So as you’ve hopefully gathered I started my new job today working for North American Stainless
in Ghent, KY. Ghent is not pronounced with a soft "g" as in grab, but
rather with a sharp, "j" sound so it is like "ladies and gents". City
names will forever be the bane of my existence. Anyway, I woke up at 5
am to get on the road by 7 so I could be there plenty early for 7:30. 5
am is just way too early for starters and there’s no way I can eat
enough to sustain me for 7 hours until noon so I had to hit a vending
machine to prevent myself from passing out. But I get there ok and
drive around looking lost for a while before stopping in the guard shack
which is where I needed to go but they got a C+ for being helpful.
Basically some other guy who was there for orientation took me under
his wing and showed me where to go next.

While standing in line
for my work boots I heard more cuss words in that 20 minute period than
I have heard in the last month. Not that I dislike swearing, but it was
a lot for 7 in the morning. It kinda set the tone for the rest of the
day in that shop guys are different, not bad, just different. More
importantly to them I was the different one, especially since I showed
up in khakis and a collared shirt as opposed to t-shirt and jeans. All
this week is orientation and safety training. So we dove right into the
paper work and then took a half-plant tour (the other half is on Friday
once they’ve trained us how not to get dead).

Lunch time
rolled around and Adam and I went out to Subway. Adam will be my
programming co-worker and I love Subway so it was a good chance to sit
down and get to know him a little better and get a feel for what to
expect next week. He set me straight on my attire too, I dig wearing my
casual clothes since my shirts were all starting to feel neglected.

The
afternoon was tough, the 5am wake up call hit me hard. Tomorrow I don’t
have to be in until 8 am so I get to sleep in a bit more. What was
really cool was how much I realized I picked up at Alcoa and how much
of it translated over to NAS (pronounced "nas" not "n-a-s"). I did
kinda feel like an outsider being one of two non-hourly employees and
not having worked there before (60% of the guys had been temps or done
contract work for NAS already so everything seemed like old hat to
them). All in all a good positive day, but I really want to get in
front of a terminal and start working.

Instead of going out to dinner alone or having a drink alone to
celebrate my first day I went out and got some gummy bears from Meijer.
It’s been a while since I had gummy bears, man they’re good. I got a
2.5 lb bag so that ought to last until Wednesday, Thursday if I ration
myself :-P. I also got a bar stool to go in my apartment and I spent
the last of my parents’ gift card to Kohl’s and got two new pairs of
jeans since my only pair is up in Lafayette and I have been wanting
some anyway.

So now I’ll do some reading and prep for orientation tomorrow then it is off to bed. Good times are a rollin’!

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