Travel job

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  #1  
Old 08-05-12, 10:56 AM
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Travel job

Wifey retired last month. Well, that wasn't good enough. She signed up on a few "head hunter" sites for travel nurses, and felt really good about one of them. She decided to take an assignment.
Fast forward 3 days.....she is somewhere between Oklahoma City and Albuquerque on her way to Crownpoint, NM to a Navajo Indian Reservation for 13 weeks
I am her navigator, making sure she stays on I-40 (duh), and reserving her motel stays each night ahead of her. Gotta have a pool, WiFi, TV for the Olympics, etc. I have Google Earth on a tab, so when she calls me I can locate where she is by mile marker or exit.
Anyone ever been out there before? Vic??? Any inside tips for the area?
 
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Old 08-05-12, 11:23 AM
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Wow....I really hope she likes helping people....some of those reservations are really 3rd world. I'd imagine there will be nothing available for her there....she'll have to drive back to the freeway for food and lodging.

She is way out there in the hinterlands. I've been through Gallup, Albuquerque, and a few others...but we crossed NM off our list.

She drove it all? Why not fly and rent? Boy I hope the pay is great!
 
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Old 08-05-12, 11:51 AM
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Pay is good, lodging is provided, travel is compensated. She was worried for 13 weeks a rental car would exceed the allowance, plus the cost of the airfare, etc., so she decided to drive. Not me.....Delta is ready when you are!! And we don't have to worry about flights home, as we consider Atlanta purgatory.....when you die, you go through Atlanta first
I pulled up a few sites on the towns where she will be, and, yeah, they only have a Dollar Store and gas station, so she will probably have to go to Gallup on a "girl" trip to secure things they need enmasse.
Her lodging is about 30 miles way south of Crownpoint on the interstate. Not sure how happy that will be, but it's provided and from the pictures it is a bed and breakfast converted to long term rentals by a person just recently, so it ain't a Motel 6, at least.
Hospital is 39 beds total. Her Cardiac ICU in Florida was 32 beds. So, yeah, a culture change. They average 9 patients a day, but the ER is where the action is. The hospital services 4700 sq miles, so people do "trips" to the hospital for treatment and leave, unless they are one of the "9.
 
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Old 08-05-12, 01:09 PM
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If the car is good and she is a "driver", it sounds like a good decision.

The big advantage is being able to take along whatever she wants for 13 weeks instead of being "hobbled" with baggage fees, changing planes and hoping your luggage keeps up with you.

Driving in the west is much easier than in the east and you make better time. Once she gets a ways past Chattanooga it is a "piece of cake" if the weather cooperates. I40 is pretty good and all cities can be manageable. It is not like threading your way through or around Atlanta.

I frequently drove from MN to CT/RI and it was a big first day to about Pittsburgh, PA and the second day, it was definitely slower since because of the terrain, traffic even though I skirted the NYC area. I also had to schedule my departure to get around Chicago at the right time of the day.

Dick
 
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Old 08-05-12, 02:32 PM
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As you said, Dick, she is making terrific time IMO. Just called from TX/NM border. She'll make Albuquerque this evening just fine. I really think her worst driving will come once she gets closer to the continental divide. Oh, she'd never be able to take a micro amount on a plane of what she did in her SUV. 7 pairs of nursing shoes....what's with that?? Pillows for motel replacement, since they usually suck. 3 suit cases, one with toiletries. I hate her driving, but I have all the calls to the house forwarded to my cell so I won't miss her in case she needs me, and I am staying ahead of her on Google earth to help her around goofy interchanges in cities. She's tough, I guess. I have her staying on the west side of Albuquerque tonight, so she won't have traffic to deal with in the morning.
 
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Old 08-05-12, 04:19 PM
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Larry - It's really great that she has an opportunity to really make a difference. Good for her.

I'm assuming she'll have some time off and if she likes a little driving there are some amazing places she can visit. Santa Fe and Taos are great for shopping, museums and dining. The Old Town Square area of Santa Fe is a great place to pick up Navaho jewelry and crafts. Taos is touristy but it's also full of galleries offering some amazing art, not all of it outrageously priced. Along with Santa Fe and Taos are the Navaho Pueblos and Chaka Canyon. I think Chaka Canyon is just north of Crownpoint.

Of course a really good husband would arrange a short visit and a romantic couple of days at the LaFonda in old Santa Fe or if you're really flush, the Inn of the Anasazi. With the right timing you might be able to fit in an elk or pronghorn hunt while wifey is working.

We really like Santa Fe, Taos is OK for a day trip and we stay away from Albuquerque. The Santa Fe area north through the Sangre De Christo Mountains up to Durango is great.
 
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Old 08-05-12, 04:33 PM
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Hmmmm...once she smells some dry air...she may just decide the time is right for a change, Larry.
 
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Old 08-05-12, 05:31 PM
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Vic, I know, she will be at 7000 feet, so even if it is 85 in daytime at 40% the nights will be in the 40's....nice.
Wayne, luckily she is having her paycheck electronically deposited, so that should keep a lot of the sporadic "buying" at bay for a while. They only work 3-12's a week, so she will have 4 off. I may plan a trip out to visit for a few days. I"ll note some of your recommendations, however. Thanks.
 
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Old 08-05-12, 09:41 PM
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Larry It really sounds like a great thing your wife is doing I know you are very proud of her. I can't give you any advice about the area as my family never has been in the area just Texas and a cousin briefly in Arizona if I remember it correctly. Your wife sounds smart and I am sure she can take care of herself. I will warn you though about Indian artifact cons that people unfortunately fall for fairly often in that area. I saw that once on Antiques Roadshow a person went to have an appraisal and the thing they brought in was a fake. So please tell her not to pay much for anything labeled as an antique as it just might be a fake. Even the experts get fooled too so buying it at an antiques store is no guarantee either. That being said though you can find many nice reproductions of things that don't cost much. I have to agree too about the reservations their hospitals are not well stocked from what I have heard so it will certainly be a challenge for your wife.
 

Last edited by hedgeclippers; 08-05-12 at 10:02 PM.
  #10  
Old 08-06-12, 03:30 AM
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Hedge, yeah, she is used to electronic telemetry, and bar code med distribution, so I think her big shock will be doing things by hand. But she can adapt, improvise and overcome.
She stopped at the rest area as she entered NM.....big mistake. They had a kazillion brochures about blanket auctions, sales, antique stores, and she was bubbly. Gotta stop that before she gets settled in. 4 days off a week, no telling what will happen She is pretty sensible, though. Said she would look for stuff for the rental cabin, so it won't be expensive antiques, just pretty, IMO.
 
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Old 08-06-12, 04:08 AM
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"But she can adapt, improvise and overcome."

Eastwood fan?
 
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Old 08-06-12, 02:03 PM
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Definitely. Who do you know that has that physique, stamina, acting ability at his age? And that saying from Heartbreak Ridge has stuck with me as a motivator.
 
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Old 08-06-12, 02:07 PM
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Just in case....we're about 6 1/2 hrs from there..................
 
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Old 08-06-12, 02:33 PM
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Thanks, Vic. I really appreciate that.
She got to her housing today. 50 miles from the hospital Now, she wasn't expecting a 4 star or anything, but she called sobbing saying she wasn't staying with rats, and junk cars piled up in the front yard. Originally the recruiter told her she would be staying about 30 miles from the hospital and that it was a former bed and breakfast. That distance was bad enough, but add 20 more..not a happy camper.
 
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Old 08-06-12, 02:41 PM
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Uhhhhhh yeah.....well...I didn't want to bring that sort of stuff up. If she's actually on a reservation or Gov owned property...that's what you expect. Remember Northern Exposure?

I was sorta hoping they might put her in a Motel 6 or similar out near the freeway.

My ex-wife RN knew some people in VA who trekked to DC every weekend. They worked 2 12's x 2 days....but stayed in an apartment that was leased by the hospital and had professional housekeeping.
 
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Old 08-06-12, 03:06 PM
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Update: I think the travel coordinator has come to her senses as she never checked into the lodging situation, so they are sending her to Gallup for a week until they can find lodging closer. Red Lion Hotel....from what I see on the internet it ain't half bad. Pool, Wi FI, restaurant, sports bar.....she'll be happier. Heck, Gallup is only 60 miles from the hospital, so what the hey??
I ran over the lodging she was assigned to using Google Earth.........Oh boy. Wish I had done that 4 days ago. She would have never left. Doing a fly over is cool, but I would have used a couple of Tomahawks if I could have found the button.
 
  #17  
Old 08-07-12, 03:27 AM
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Larry I am so sorry to hear your wife is having so many problems. I am glad you are using Google maps it sure does let you see many things. I just recently had a friend move to las Vegas though and I wanted to see what her house looked like up close but couldn't as apparently the community was gated so it has it's limitations. I hope your wife has a laptop that way she can check out certain destinations ahead of time using Google Maps and street view. Glad you are keeping us posted please tell your wife we are all wishing her well.
 
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Old 08-07-12, 04:15 AM
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Hedge, yeah, street view is cool. My daughter was buying a house in Highlands Ranch, CO some time back and had a few questions regarding fix up, landscaping, etc. I got the address, pulled street view and could talk to her about her little tree border, window frames, garage side lighting, etc. "how do you know that??" she said. Just another day at the beach.
Thanks to all for your comments and concerns about this trip. I know it was a personal thing, but having "back up" sure makes the medicine go down better. You can't have too many friends, and sometimes it is the ones you don't even know that are the closest.
 
  #19  
Old 08-07-12, 11:54 AM
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Checked out Crownpoint yesterday, didn't see much greenery.


I ran over the lodging she was assigned to using Google Earth.........Oh boy. Wish I had done that 4 days ago.

You wouldn't have the coordinates handy for this rats nest? Just curious.


If there're rats there are probably huge snakes looking to eat them. Good thing she is doing but I'll stay up here in the frozen north thank you.
 
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Old 08-07-12, 03:19 PM
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Hey, Baldwin, yeah 35 degrees 16 minutes 20.69 seconds North and 108 degrees 7 minutes 56.41 seconds west. Once you get there, draw back to see the "lush" greenery for miles and miles
 
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