Sunday, November 15, 2009
So you all may or may not know that Jim and I have been on the road and living in this trailer for 4 1/2 years now. Hard to believe, I know. What's even MORE hard to believe, is that our marriage has survived AND that I haven't killed him. YET. But that's another post altogether.
Today I want to talk about pink jobs and blue jobs. No NOT "blow jobs". Get your mind out of the gutter, folks, although, if you think about it, that WOULD be a "pink" job. Anyway, a few years ago we met a couple while camping in the Seattle suburbs. We had just pulled into the site; then Jim was doing his thing putting chocks between the wheels, disconnecting the truck, etc. I stood there next to the trailer waiting for Jim to finish before I could go in and set things up inside. I made some comment to our "neighbor", and the woman said, "Oh, I call those 'pink' jobs and 'blue' jobs. Everything on the outside is a 'blue' job and my husband takes care of that, and I take care of the inside, or 'pink' jobs."
So, ever since then, we've referred to things as "pink" or "blue" jobs. Or I should say, I like to say, "blue" job. Like when it's time to drain the gray water from the shower because the water is up to my ankles. Or the shitty job of emptying the black water tank (you know - the human waste - yuk!) Maybe that should be called the "brown" job.
When things need fixing around the trailer? BLUE job.
Check tires for air? BLUE job.
Change flat tire on trailer? BLUE job.
Wash/wax big honking trailer? BLUE job.
Okay, now before you all start thinking that my husband is working REALLY hard, you've got to realize that those items listed above don't happen too often, except for the emptying of the tanks. So basically, the blue jobs don't occur too often.
Now PINK jobs, on the other hand, are a DAILY occurrence. You know, things like fixing the bed, doing the dishes, sweeping the floor, vacuuming, dusting, etc. It's true that Jim helps me with the pink jobs ONCE IN AWHILE. You may recall what I thought about him doing the dishes.
While I believe that there are men out there that are good at house/trailer cleaning, Jim's motto seems to be, "That'll do." I was fixing the bed the other day, and Jim decided to help me. I know he wonders why I even FIX the bed. So, I pull the sheets and blanket tight and straight on my side of the bed, tuck them all under the mattress, and pull the top quilt up to my pillow. Flatten it with my hand, fluff my pillow, stand it on its edge, leaning up against the second pillow that we don't sleep on but use for decoration. I'm hoping Jim will follow my movements. Hah! He makes a stab at straightening the blankest and sheets and then basically just grabs the top quilt, and pulls it up over the mess. He doesn't tuck his covers in. This wouldn't bother me so much except that that whole side of the bed is reflected in the closet mirrors. So you can see the bed sheets hanging any which way from under the quilt.
I said to Jim, "Wait a minute. You were in the service. I thought you guys were supposed to make up your beds so tight that you could bounce a quarter off of it."
Jim said, "I was in the Navy. We slept in bunks. We didn't have to make our beds like this."
Oh. Never mind.
So basically, it's understood between Jim and me that he handles repairs and outside work on the trailer - thus "blue" jobs, and I handle daily care and inside work on the trailer - thus "pink" jobs.
Life was good. Then I met my neighbor.
I've been meaning to go over and introduce myself. I've been wanting to ask her where she bought her patio table. It must be foldable since she has a 5th wheel too. She was sitting outside yesterday when we pulled up from grocery shopping. I hopped out of the truck and told Jim that I was going over there to say hello.
It was a RUDE AWAKENING.
We had a real nice chat. She seems like a wonderful person. Really. But then we got to talking about trailers, etc. She hauls her trailer. It's 40 ft. just like ours. I was pretty impressed. (I drive our truck, but not with the trailer attached.) She went on to say that she does ALL the repairs on the trailer. SAY WHAT?
"Oh, yes. I've repaired the air conditioner. I've climbed underneath this baby and had to work on one of the holding tanks. I've had to......"
I pretty much stopped listening. She had me at "I haul the trailer". I was in awe. I quickly looked over my shoulder to see if Jim was outside and by chance could overhear the conversation. I do NOT want to let this secret out!
She must have seen the look of surprise on my face. I don't know if I actually blurted out, "Why doesn't your husband DO ANYTHING?" or if it was just written on my face.
She said, "When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade."
She is woman, hear her roar.
This woman ALSO work camps. Meaning, she works wherever they camp so they either get paid or get their camping for free.
I stood there a moment, then put my arms out in front of me, bent from waist, and said, "I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy."
I came back to our trailer and Jim asked, "So, what did our neighbor have to say?"
"Oh, not much."