Wednesday, 30th, 2011. We had work at 12. Fan drove Sarah and I up to Trevelyan. We three are all in D4, meaning day shift number 4, Today we worked in shed 1, we heard our supervisor talking ominously the last time we worked “ It’s much faster so get some practice now while you can”. Shed 1 is where we pack the green kiwis, were as before we were doing the gold ones. The shed was smaller and the machine older and very loud. Fan and I were side my side each responsible for two belts to feed trays into. It was much faster but we only had two belts each were as before we had 4, so even though it was fast we didn’t have to move much, grabbing the box, ripping off a plastic sheet from a over head hanger and ripping off a hard plastic cover from the table, then whoosh, off with the old cardboard chap and on with the next.
Fan and I, like true teams men helped each other out when the other was lagging behind, we were the fastest in our group. To my left was Lex, a very small girl from Thailand, we chatted and she taught me how to say hello in Thai “saw ah ti kap” Because they had too many packers today Sarah was transferred to our unit, she was given her belts and after a brief intro she was on her way as happy as can be. “I like it so much more than packing, with packing there is so much dust from the fruit and you have to look at every single kiwi, the fruit keeps on coming off the line so you have to be fast and the supervisor is always there watching you, this is so much better and you can walk around” Sarah said excitedly during our break time, it would seem she is a fan of being a tray liner. There were sausages rolls free on the brake. “One each, please” Said a flustered canteen woman as us the hungry herd of workers grinded past the helpless rolls “one in each hand do you mean?” I asked as I reached out for a second one “NO CERTAINLY NOT!!” the poor thing screeched back, there was some titterings so at least I got a few laughs.
It was only a half day and it went fast. The sun was shining brightly as Fan drove us back home. We have been looking for two more people to stay at our place and today Sarah found a girl from Japan who seemed interested. She came to have a look in the evening and complained about it being too far away from Te Puke. It was dark and she needed to get the bus in Te puke so I walked her back to town. “It is so hard to find a man who wants a wife to stay at home and look after the kids these days, I hope I can find one” she said to me on the walk back. I thought this an odd and interesting thing to say, I would have expected a Japanese female to say almost the opposite.
She was exceptionally small and I almost lost sight of her a few times when she was beside me. For every gangril step I took she had to really wiggle to keep up with me. I got her back to the bus stop with time to spare. “Arigato” she thanked me in Japanese and bowed slightly. ‘How nice’ I thought. I praised myself on a good deed.
I thought that if I was checking out a house in a new area which I didn’t really know and I needed to catch a bus then I would appreciate someone walking me there. We don’t think she will live with us but it was a nice meeting.