- Posted June 6, 2011 by
Santa Claus, IN, Indiana
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Your best or worst summer jobs
Golf Course Hell
My heart goes out to the army of seasonal workers on the hottest golf courses of our world: sun-searing, humidity-smothering, seemingly endless seas of suffering. By high noon, just breathing seemed like the struggle of combat. Plus, I found out first hand that such work can be made even worse by sometimes cruel coworkers
I had just graduated from college with a nearly- useless degree in "The Arts." A first cousin offered a temporary job working on a golf course deep in the Ohio River Valley. As I started work in early June, a record-breaking summer started to unfold; daily temperatures soared past 100 degrees, day after day. It seldom rained; but the Ohio River served superbly as a god-awful humidifier.
I thought I was going to die one afternoon while hand-raking a large sand trap. I dropped to my knees as the outside world began to blur. Instinctively I crawled toward the closest shade. I laid there spread-eagle, as my vital signs crept back toward normal. Of course, no one was in sight. Finally I felt well enough to begin the long walk back toward the maintenance building; taking advantage of any possible shade. A stint in air-conditioning, going home early, and my cousin somehow duped me into returning the next day.
Having said this, my worst memory is not directly related to the horrible heat and humidity. The high school boys I worked with didn't warm-up to me like the weather did. I didn't have their stamina and they thought my cousin unfairly favored me; despite the fact he intentionally gave me the more difficult jobs to counter any such appearances. But, worse yet, once they found I didn't share their proclivity for cruelty to small animals they had found the subject of their greatest amusement and my greatest disdain.
Such cruelty came to a head one scorching afternoon. I fledgling baby bird had fallen from its next. My young coworkers began gleefully tossing it about. Shortly thereafter its head fell off. That's when one decided I should get a close-up view of this gruesome little head; bulging eyes and all.
After chasing me around with the head and body grew old for them, they placed the head on top of the sizzling hood of an old tractor; gaining some sadistic pleasure from watching it literally fry. They insisted the head remain there like a disfigured hoodorniment.
I made a snap decision after work that day and fled. I didn't even give my cousin a two minute warning. I drove nearly 500 miles before I phoned him and officially quit the worst summer job with which I have ever been inflicted.