After traveling from southwest PA with our friends, Steven & Linda, (of The Chouters), we arrived back at Heartland RV Park in Campbellsville, KY, on Wednesday, October 11.
It was a very different drive for me, let me tell you why: instead of my usual place as line-leader, I filed in at the caboose position! I had the GPS on, the route was set, but I was in the BACK! I didn’t decide on the route, didn’t double or triple check the route, (like my usual self), I just followed the leader – Linda!
At first I was just a little concerned that I wouldn’t like being the last in line. I did have full confidence that Linda had the whole thing under control, and that she and Steven had the route and overnight stop at Cabelas in Charleston, SC, all properly vetted, but I’m not used to being last.
Turns out that initial concern was all for nothing! After all the excitement of the wedding and saying goodbyes to my parents, it was actually very nice to just not have to worry about any of it. I made a few calls, thought about my favorite parts of the wedding day, and enjoyed driving by all the fall colors that were starting to show themselves along the way. It was amazing!
So – back to Amazon, although revisiting my daughters amazing wedding day would be so much more enjoyable!, we arrived at Heartland and after short debate, choose our two sites, and one for Tracy & Lee, who would be arriving in a couple of weeks. (Bill covered the pedestal with a bag, after I called and got permission from Beth, the owner.) We were surprised how many spots were still open!
Our first day was an abbreviated orientation. We had gotten emails with stuff to do online, stuff we had done on the clock 2 years ago, Amazon’s “My Docs” packet, which includes, among other things our I9’s and W4’s. We went in at noon and were home by 3:20pm! It was Happy Hour!
The following day we were up bright (ok – it wasn’t bright at all – it was still DARK!) and early – and got punched in right at 6:30am – what were we thinking? Ugh! We made it through the 10 hour, safety and process training school, and the following 2 – 5 hour “work hardening” days; by then it almost felt like we never left! It was amazing how quickly things came right back!
So, if you’ve read about our experience 2 years ago, you may be asking – what’s different and/or what’s the same? You can read our first post about Amazon 2 years ago here: AMAZON!
Well, now that’s we’ve completed our first 50 hour week, let me answer those questions.
First – what’s the same? The campground is the same, a gravel parking lot with painted lines and pedestals. Literally. Why stay here you want to know? One word: convenience. That’s it.
What’s the same at Amazon? The jobs are the same. There are packers and packers, stowing and receiving. I have not heard of any Camperforce getting ICQA so far this year.
What’s different then? Our first time working an Amazon “Peak”, as they call it, was here at Campbellsville (commonly called C’ville) back in 2015. It was a year of transition for them. They were in process of switching from a “tekho”, an acronym for “Toys, Electronics, Kitchen, Home, Other” FC (fulfillment center) to an apparel FC. The “other” included books, a small amount of clothes, auto parts, lawn & garden, anything that didn’t fit into one of the other categories. Now – the same FC is probably about 80-85% apparel, the rest still teko. So a huge changes took place. It affected all their processes, and I noticed that more in pack than Bill did as a picker. It created a lot of confusion because one manager wanted things done one way and another wanted the same thing done differently. Contrasting that this year, it seems that everyone is on the same page. There are even little reminders to help, which is great – I don’t have to ask as many questions, just refer to the little mini lamenated posters in each station.
The biggest change for Bill and I this year is we are on a traditional day shift vs “L” shift. We were told that wouldn’t be offered to Camperforce this year, and we were sorely disappointed! First, not having to arrive until 12:15pm meant no dark-thirty alarm clock, instead waking in daylight, which we totally prefer. I know a lot of you morning people are saying “So what?” but we are generally night-owls, so L shift most closely matched our natural schedule. Second, we earned differential pay of $.75 per hour! While that may not sound like a lot, it sure does add up! After 10 – 40 hour weeks that equals $600! That’s just for straight-time! If we were to work even 5 overtime days that’s another $112.50! That’s significant coin! And we won’t be earning it this year! Not happy about that!
Another change this year is some of the areas in the building have been remodeled. My understanding is they were completed for last years Peak also, but this is our first time seeing it. Break room “A” is more open now, with lots more natural light coming in huge windows, making it much brighter.
Now on to my “picks/packs of the week!” This section was a hit last time, so I will revive it for this year as well! As a bonus, in case anyone is interested, we will be including the Amazon link! How cool is that? Ready?
Of course, as I told you two years ago, there are lots of adult toys for sale at Amazon. I won’t go into the specifecs, but trust that whatever your tastes in that department may be, Amazon has something for you!
The first thing may actually be useful to some of you. I had never heard of them before – so maybe you haven’t either – Hickies Elastic No-Tie Shoelaces. They come in all kinds of colors. I have no idea how well they do or don’t work, but a very cool concept! You can purchase and try them out yourself using the link below.
Next up, I packed a couple variations of women’s disposable nipple cover pasties/breast patches. Neon green aliens and cat face ones. They sound ouchy to me!
Last for this week, since it was right before Halloween, I packed several bags of party size Butterfingers shaped like skulls! How fun!
One thing a lot of Amazonians have is some type of pedometer. Something very basic would be one of these – which is what Bill and I have: They are an inertial type that work far better than the “clicky” type of pedometers. We have them for two years now with zero issues. Plus their really inexpensive. You can purchase using the link below.
But, there are also the fancy FitBits and Jawbones. It’s each to their own, whatever size, color and price range you are looking for. Our friends have these and like them a lot. They have many more options. You can check them out by clicking the link below.
Bill has been walking about 25,000 steps a day! That’s about 10 miles. I’ve been doing about 1/4 that, which suits me just fine.
So, I’m off to add some pics and get this posted. Let’s chat again soon!
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