Thursday, August 9, 2007

When I feel inclined to moan ...

I've blogged about work misery this week and it's got me thinking about an old memory.

Down by the buggy, muggy, swampy edge of a certain river near my city, stand the ruins of an old factory, a textile mill. Nothing but blackflies and cottonmouths inhabit the place now, with its roof long away crumbled away.

A few years ago, a resident of the nearby town shared some letters with me, written a century ago by a relative of his who once worked in that mill.

And when I think my job is tough, I remember what She endured.

She worked from dawn to dusk and often beyond, six days every week, in whatever uncomfortable clothes Ladies wore back then -- in a blazing hot hellhole of a factory where Her every breath, day in, day out, drew in lung-destroying bits of fiber and dust. Around Her, the satanic machines roared constantly -- and no one had any concept of hearing protection.

If She were to lose a finger or worse, they'd show Her the door.

I have naught of which to complain.

7 comments:

Molly said...

The answer to your question is "Of course", though I quake at the thought of the adjectives you might use!

What you say is so true. We have the life of Riley, compared to work conditions way back when.

morinn said...

wow, how did they preserve this letter?

Rebecca said...

Perspective. Our misery is our misery, and we feel it keenly. But it is good to realize that it pales in the face of absolute abject misery.

eastcoastdweller said...

Morinn: They had it among family possessions, in a box in their attic. Might be harder to do in tropical Mauritius!

Rebecca: Profound comment, as always.

eastcoastdweller said...

Molly: Nothing to quake about, unless You have a phobia about being marvelous!

...amarpreet said...

A little advice if you don't mind ECD and this just comes from experience...if you feel the need to moan - then you should moan. Rejecting how you feel because another has perhaps been through worse will only affect your mental health negatively. Feel what you have to feel but just don't let it linger.

eastcoastdweller said...

Empress: Good advice, will take it.