Sunday, Y’all

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At the local Starbucks, which is strangely quite for this time of the day; usually and on weekdays, this place is humming with business with the cadence of deep Southern accents floating about.  Its a nice break too from the one bedroom apt I am sharing with son unit.  Not much to do and the chance of scenery is nice.

The craziness of the week-long shutdown for retooling is over but not done.  I need to report very early tomorrow morning when the assembly lines start to spit out cars, to be with the Japanese engineers, who are there in the event something they worked on last week goes wrong.

I am told that for this section of the plant the work went smoothly.  It was tiring  but interesting with a few observations.

The first is a tip to these Japanese engineers, most of who do not speak English with any degree of fluency, who can cut their way through some very thick/string sluthern accents.  One of the American staff, sounds very much like the charaatcher, Mater in the moive, “Cars”.

Also the delicate dance that must be performed between the Japanese staff and the unionized workers.  Was asked by one of the Japanese dispachees to ask  one of the millwrights to set up a piece of equipment that supported electrical wiring.  was told I needed to go to the electricians.  A millwright came to me saying that something installed by one of the Japanese vendors was interfering  with his work.  After sorting out which Japanese vendor, the offending piece belonged to, we learned the piece had been simply put on backwards  prior to it being installed by him…….

Then there was  an exchange between a Japanese vendor and the local factory \staff.  On inspection of a control panel, a protective plastic shield over some circuitry had been placed not as specs dictated, which could allow fingers to slip through and…. The Japanese vendor said they had not touched this area during this modification and indirectly meant that since the factory had not caught this before it signed off for delivery inspection, it was not their problem.  The issue is going to be fixed, but I wonder what the person’s attitude would have been had it been Japan and they were dealing with a Japanese rep?

So have tomorrow to get through and then a trip back home to take care of my other eye.

 

 

 

 

 

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Bad Coffee Day

Yesterday.  Had a one day holiday the day before and did not do anything particularly strenuous. Then before heading out in the morning for this job, made what probably was too strong a cup of coffee.

A hour or so later,  I could feel my pulse racing strongly- alarmingly so,  felt queasy below and my hip joints felt as though they were on fire  from the standing I must do.

Was sent home before noon and slept for the remainder of the day and for most of last night as well.  This morning,  felt fine and had a normal workday.

Am envious of the native Japanese interpreters who can put into Japanese far more smoothly than I, what needs to be said to them. I find myself afterwards thinking to myself I should have put what I wanted to say to the Japanese another way.  But then as I have said before,  my interpretation experience has been little to none and if my skills are found wanting, again I won’t be too offended if I am released.

 

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Y’Know

Been away but a bit of a week and the politics, posturing and bloviation of DC seems so far way.

A thought hit me yesterday, after taking in the latest cowardly assault on those who willingly put their lives on the line to keep evil from dissolving the society we take for granted into anarchy.

Ii is now shutdown time here.  That is, all car production has stopped and during a very short period of time, machinery is adjusted, modified or replaced. And in the very small corner of this very large factory, there is assembled to carry out part of this work, a team that includes an expat Brit, a Slav, a Muslim, numerous Japanese who are here on temporary assignment and a big dollop of good ‘ole boys.  And you know what?  Everyone gets along just fine here.

Perhaps if all of us  paid very little attention to the race-baiters, the  race hustlers and the media outlets who given them voice, and we might just be surprised at just how well we do get along.

 

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What I see as I open the Door in the Morning

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This job started last Monday and my “workweek” will extend to this coming Monday and then a day off.

Part of what requires the long week is the plant is in the middle of its biannual shutdown, during which new machinery and line layouts must be completed within a very limited time, i.e., before the plant starts up operation again.

My job and the job of the other translators/interpreters on this project is to interface with the Japanese engineers and the local staff as they do their work. This involves sometimes a delicate dance sometimes between union contractors and the Japanese.  There’s also, even after this factory has been here for 30 years now, lingering bigotry towards the Japanese.  Overheard one of the local contractors make a remark about the little Japanese men.

The other translators/ interpreters on this project,  all native Japanese handle interpreting much better than I do.  But I also said at time of hire, I felt my strength is in translating, not interpreting, especially Toyota stuff.  Because of this, I wouldn’t be surprised, or upset to be told I am just not up to scratch with intercepting , but we’ll see.

Conditions here are a universe wide difference between this plant and that Ghetto Company where I worked.  No silly, rules for the sake of control, facilities are not first class, but the toilets are not vandalized.  And employee morale is much different as well.  But then this is Toyota and not the Ghetto Company.

Seem to be doing a decent job of staying out of son unit’s way and do chores, like cleaning out his cat’s liter boxes, washing his (and my ) clothes, preparing him a bento, like this one:

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He has also started night shift for a week meaning he’s gone when I come back. But he has bought himself a 3D printer and every evening since I arrived last week, he’s had it running well into the evening.  I still get to sleep, but it’d be nicer without the noise.  But as wife unit said, if I can quickly go to sleep with a fan running….

 

 

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And So We Start

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Arriving 2 days before the start of my latest, but temporary adventure to keep our bank account from bleeding dry.

There’ll be difficulties in this.  One as I wrote earlier is my inexperience with interpreting.  The other is living for a lengthy period of time with Son Unit.

He’s a good kid and has noticeably matured since leaving university 2 years ago.  He  even prepared me this welcome dinner.

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Though the steak was overcooked (even he admitted it) and had way to much pepper on it (he’s into that, I am not) it was a nice gesture.  Still,  living with him…  First of all it is his space I am intruding into  and how we keep house couldn’t be different.  He, to put  it nicely, is casual about his housekeeping, especially around the kitchen area. I am not casual  about house keeping,  not into military barracks like neatness, but I am comfortable with being neat.

My neatness concerns probably come out of growing up at home with a mother who while educated  and worked as a medical professional her working life, was also a slob. A slob like seeing as a child, heaps of unwashed dishes in the sink in the morning, and watching cockroaches scurry away from out from under these dishes as I moved them to clean up…….

But it is time to move onwards with this new job, which starts tomorrow.

 

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Who do I like for Our Next President?

This eloquently captures what I think.

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You can pick one’s friends, your nose, but not one’s Family

Birthday coming up and younger brother, Pound Salt sent me this”tasteful” card….

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