Some of you were probably wondering, "Where has Nurse Jack been"? I took a year off from medicine and went to work for a construction company that specializes in rock fall, slope stabilization and land-slide mitigation. I got to see a few places that most people don't, and learned a few things along the way.
NW Montana: Yes a river does run through it. If you like to fish, hunt and get your head kicked in by drunk LOGGERS with a killer meth habit, this is nirvana.
SE Ohio: Or anywhere in Ohio for that matter. Had the 'pleasure' of spending 35 days here. You can get a house on 5 acres for under $100K, but good luck finding a job that pays more than $10/hr. Where I'm from, the water from the sewer treatment plant isn't brown and foamy when it's pumped into the river. You also better damn well know that a Buckeye is NOT a furry little animal. The inspector (a local) on the job wouldn't speak to me for a week after I told him I didn't know what one was, he later showed me one, and I remarked it looked like a big acorn. 3 more days of the silent treatment was to follow. They also are VERY serious about their Ohio State football team. Here is the place to get your ass kicked by drunk REDNECKS with a killer oxycotin habit.
Wheeling WV: Want to bet on the dogs, catch a high school football game and finish off the night at a strip club? Park your car in the lot that they all share and you can walk between them without so much as a fence or road separating them. On a side note, for a $5.00 tip on top of the standard $20.00 for a lap dance, they have been known to let you slip your 'tip' in.
Cheyenne WY: 10 gal Stetsons, belt buckles the size of turkey platters, and 5'1" 350lb strippers working to save money for dog grooming school (no way I could make that up). 70MPH sustained winds and maybe one tree per square mile, this place gives you the chance to get your ass beat by drunk COWBOYS with a killer meth habit.
NE Arizona: Navajo/ Hopi Indian reservation. Miles and miles of nothing as far as you can see, I now know why Native Americans are pissed off at the round eye. Monument Valley and the surrounding area is odd desert beauty, but if you seen a John Wayne western save yourself the trip. If you do go, plan on having your stuff stolen by the hotel housekeepers, the bumper ripped off while you are at work and being pan-handled by angry locals, who will kick your ass for not filling up their tank at the AM/PM. BTW, the closest beer available is 65 miles away at the Utah border, and is crappy '3.2' domestics.
Southern California: When you are from Washington, winters can be long and wet. So wintering over in Santa Barbara was a little bit of all right, that is if you can afford $2,500/ month to rent a garage that has been remodeled into a 'cute, studio apartment'.
Well, I'm home now, and must say, I love it here in Portland, even with a gay mayor that 'allegedly' schtuped a under-age page.