Sorry for the LONG wait in between blog postings. This has been due to a number of things, and those of you following on "Hardcore Pickers" and/or are a Facebook friend you will realize why.
I've been busy PICKING...and, well, had a hospital stay for a week, a week recovery, then right away screwed up my left elbow/arm, had it in a sling for a week, etc, etc...
Yeah, I can hear the tiny violins playing...!
No sympathy required, anyway. Life happens.
Problem is, as a self employed picker/dealer, my income tends to drop dramatically when I am "laid up."
You see, as someone who has been basically self employed since I was 20, there is no real safety net....like "paid holidays", "sick leave," banked time", etc, etc.
I get sick, can't work, my income drops dramatically...sometimes all the way down to $0.00 a day.
If you are a picker, you want to remain healthy. I'm getting older, being in my early 40s now...
(YIKES! Where has the time gone???)....
....and now I am finding I don't recover from illness or injuries as fast as when I was in my 20s, or even as fast as when I was in my 30s.
Pickers tend to end up with bad backs, clicking joints, many scars, etc; all from our day to day activities. You just HAVE to lift that old oak high-boy into the truck by yourself, because the person you bought it from is unable to help due to their health/age/weather/etc. Add to your troubles that you are barely breathing after taking an hour to manage to get it up the 65 degree incline of the stairs from the insanely dusty basement.
Just more mud in the lungs to hack up on the way home. Between each hack, snort, grimace, you try to remember what drawer at home the pain killers/muscle relaxants are...and if your back starts to complain before the 2 day drive home is done, will there be a small town drug store open tomorrow......on a Sunday?
Injuries, pain, and all the numerous things involved with those 2 things (and there are LOTS of things involved with those two innocuous words) are part and parcel of this lifestyle.
So, if you have a 9 to 5 job that includes a health plan, paid sick leave, dental care, etc, etc, etc, you might just want to stick to it and just do a little picking as a hobby. Making it your life's work is not as easy as shows on "Reality TV" makes it seem.
Pickin' for a living ain't easy. (yes, yes, yes, I can hear the "whooshing" of English teachers vigorously waggling pointer fingers...I know that "ain't" is a controversial "word" , but I was just going for a bit of drama...)
ANY WHO, picking is darn hard work, as well as risky financially and health wise....and those last two factors are also linked to each other more than we professional pickers would like.