Saturday, July 9, 2011

Dirty Jobs

One of the benefits of a seminary education at Jordanville is that you learn new skills that you can apply in the “real world.” One of them is cleaning. Seminarians are regularly assigned to clean the dormitory on a rotating basis. In addition, there’s also cleaning up in the kitchen as well as major uborka for feasts such as Christmas, Pascha, and Pentecost. If you’re not used to doing housework, you will be by the time you graduate. In fact, you might even clean more than necessary, because living in a dormitory with a bunch of other guys can get a little messy.

During my stay here in Honolulu I intended to get an office job through a temp agency. Initial inquiries turned out disappointing, so I turned to a surefire solution: the University job board. My old college maintains a small billboard with help wanted ads. One of them advertised housework for a decent wage; the location was also pretty good. I gave it a shot.

The house turned out to be a fifteen minute walk away. After some preliminary chatting with the lady of the house, I went to work. Scrubbing, brushing, sweeping, and mopping earned me some hard cash. I returned the next day, too. And then the woman recommended to two other potential clients: her sister and her tenant.

I will spare you the details, but I did get pretty down and dirty at times. It was pretty fun in a way, too. The upshot of doing manual labor like cleaning is that the results (and resulting satisfaction) are pretty immediate. What was once grody is now shiny. I understand a little more why cleanliness is akin to godliness.

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