9:31 am, April 18, 2014

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  • Outside the Beltway
    becca
    The article on those working in the "field" (Montana to be exact) is spot on. The work obviously gets done because these people are happy and the stress level is quite different than at the "flag pole". They actually seem to ENJOY their work. Whereas, working in the NCR is not all it is cracked up to be due to the extreme pressure to perform at 120% and work 24/7. There is no down time. No time to enjoy the drive from site 1 to site 2 (albeit home to work or a new BRAC location to the Pentagon). It's cut throat and from the sudden deaths that I have seen in my agency in the past year, it is taking a toll. I would love to analyze the death/serious illness rates of those employees in the various HQ regions, my thoughts are that the results would be eye opening. PTSD is a real and completely un-recognized factor among those in such a cut throat environment.
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  • TGIS
    deployed decoy
    Thank God Its Summer. Now it will start getting warm and sunny in Kuwait. 118F at 9AM is just too darn chilly, although the 'cold' water from the storage tanks on the roof will scald a person. The blowing and drifting dirt will also subside since everything is superheated, no more micro dirt devil storms until fall. Driving here is akin to a combination of DC, Naples (Italy) and LA all on their worse Friday afternoon drive to five weeks summer vacation. This is a lawless land, keep the rubber side down the only rule of the road. Plan on a slow death in a upside down car, as the dirt drift builds cutting off the airway (not unlike snow avalanche suffocation). Like Linda, I have worked in the west most of my life. Drove through Las Vegas once with 4 inches of white stuff on the freeway, TGIS (Sunday) that morning. We winched two state cops out of the tall weeds, before we just left that mess in the rearview mirror at 40MPH on a snow floor. And Becca, feds don’t get PTSD, although a small number have been known to go postal in the past. These were people vary apparently predisposed to mental illness due to who their mother (or father) was. After all in America where we can sue anyone for anything, never our fault. That bar tender that got me too drunk to drive my date home long ago (a perfect example), who is still paying the child support because after all, he kept selling me the booze that led to propagation of the species in his parking lot. Get over it Beltway slugs, go out in the real world and smell the sagebrush.
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  • Wow!!
    Big Joe
    Any openings? Sounds wonderful!!
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  • Yes
    deployed decoy
    Just saw a GS13 Log Mgmt position this week on USAJOBS. You give up US locality pay. Move into a shipping container. Work 12-16 hours a day. But do get free food, and all you can eat ice cream. I at least have an appartment off post at the end of the 8 hour day and 25 mile drive to what could be America after global warming takes hold. Minus cold beer of course.
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  • living & working in the West
    Tamblyn
    Great Column Linda! I've worked in the Rocky Mountain area for 31 years of my 36 year career so far. LOVE visiting DC, however, but it does make me thankful living in the west. Currently very thankful for the hard work of the firefighters in CO, WY, NM and MT. YOU ROCK!
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  • Way, Way far from the Beltway
    Lifer
    Let me give you the pessimists view of working out of the Beltway and in the Wild West. Cover 144,000 miles of territory with very little travel budget because your POD is too insignigicant to the higher ups. Travel 71 miles each way every day to your little POD because your boss is too uptight to allow occupational flex. Deal with having no cable service because again, why should they run cable to a town with less than 500 people? And how many states do you know of that have STATE highways that are gravel roads? Look forward to at least one flat tire every other month. Deal with having only one option for phone service since the others have no coverage here. And as for the "summer"? We have snow on the mountains behind our house on July 4th and it will be there again come early September. And with only 22 folks in a POD (and thats one of the larger ones) just try and get promoted. Even when people retire the positions are not filled. To leave this more realistic view of living in the Wild West on a more positive note....we know summer is officially here because the first tourist got gored by a buffalo in Yellowstone the other day. Happy Summer to us all...enjoy all 8 weeks of it!
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  • Could be worse
    deployed decoy
    Could be one of those really sought after jobs out on Salt Lake or the Idaho Nuc labs while living in Arco ID or maybe the desert training area out of Barstow, that Army depot 2 hours north of Reno a very special place. At least Yellowstone is a treasure and that highway from the north I would drive everyday just for the view and to dodge deer on the winter range (the US Highway).
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  • glad to be far from the beltway
    disgusted fed who hopes to hold out until retirement
    However, the micromanaging is the worst I have ever seen. In less than 18 months am moving to a place with an 1800's dirt road (still maintained by the state) which is 2 hours from my job. We don't believe in telework (unless you are certain individuals), so I'll be retiring then.
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