Learning to be an ice cream man

Woke this morning to the mournful wail of a train passing close by. We ate a few pineapple cookies which they had bought the night before, and then left. Arrived at the depot and Steve told me to go out with a bloke called Pete to train.

We set off about 1 pm after loading up the truck with goodies and a few slabs of dry ice. It took us about 40 mins drive down the freeway before we arrived at his route (they say ‘rout’ as in woodwork). There he just turned on his jingle box and hazard flashers and chugged down the road in ‘D’ with his foot off the accelerator. Within seconds little brats appeared and jumped up and down, ran off, or ran towards the van depending on whether they had money or not. Pete’s van was right-hand-drive because it was an ex-PO van and they deliver mail to boxes at the side of the road, by truck. Continue reading

Cleveland, Ohio

Hit Cleveland at about 7:30am. Bit of a smoggy industrial city. Anyway we enquired at the bus station about transport to Euclid. Everyone very helpful. Took several buses to get what to Lake Shore. Spoke to a lady who had been to Russia. “Those poor people – not one owns their own home – not one!”

We finally found the address given in our letter of employment. It was a private house and what was more depressing was that there was no answer at the door. We trudged to a payphone and rang the other number we had been given. Steve Atkinson said he would come out to us. We had tea (without milk) in his front room whilst waiting for him. (Steve’s wife had been in the ‘beathroom’ when we first called). Turned the TV on to find another prize show. Advertisements every two minutes it seemed. Steve arrived in a big US car and we Continue reading

Arrival in New York

Empire State BuildingThis is a diary I kept during a working holiday to the United States Backstory >

New York, 8:30am local time. What an experience the last n hours have been! Train to connect Victoria to Gatwick cancelled. Caught the next to arrive in time. Our coach full of BUNACers. Most have no jobs lined up. Lots of queuing and messing about at airport. Oppressive heat.

Eventually boarded the TIA plane, a huge 276 seat DC-8. The first thing that struck us was the American accents from the stewardesses. Phil and I had been put at the very back where the seats do not recline. Took off – deafening rumbling and roaring compared to BAC 1-11. Phil and I moved to seats further up the plane. Stewardesses have permanent stick-on smiles and pretend to giggle at every opportunity. Gave us snacks and free soft drinks. Got a few hours’ sleep and then it was breakfast time. Sausage, yellow plastic foam, tea-ette and crescent roll. Flew over NY at about 4am. God knows what time body wise. Anyway the twinkling amber lights had that familiar toytown look.
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