Have you ever had a job that was stress free?
Well no one can truly say yes to that as most are stressed out about day one. But really think about it, have you? I truly enjoy the work I do now for my employer, stress and all it is worth the stress and I've learned how to filter that out as the tasks I complete as far from life or death situations. When I make that a point when someone is ready to jump off the cliff it tends to put them back into perspective. Ours lives are not that serious...
I think the job that I will forever hold dear and never forget. The job one I held at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2010 is the one I instantly will name, every time if asked. It was a short handful of months, but the experience overall was FUN. Each day gearing up at the beginning of it all when I started working there in April was exciting. I've always been a race fan, but to be a part of the experience that thousands come to and so many more watch around the globe is a pretty amazing.
Even though the majority of what I did there was what some may consider grunt work, I enjoyed it. I met some great down to earth no bullshit people. Did we joke nearly every chance we got? You bet we did! Goofing off in the warehouse and track side was the usual. Packing orders to ship with the girls and taking trash out behind the team garages was never something to complain about...you never knew who you might see.
I also had the pleasure of meeting some of the drivers. Hands down, these athletes put themselves out there, of course most likely to those they feel won't be all creepy-like to them. Yes I am going to drop names because they are all very inspiring. Just to name them all, well the ones that I remember: Sarah Fisher, Will Power, Danica Patrick, Helio Castroneves, John Andretti, Ryan Briscoe, and the late Dan Wheldon.
All of them and the others who have faded a bit in my mind were genuine and far from fake personality of any sort. They love the work they do and the goal they're trying to accomplish, that checkered flag win.
John Andretti's Team lined up on race day
Dan handing over his shades to his assistant
Ryan Briscoe and I
Probably my favorite driver photo ever. Rest Easy Dan Wheldon.
May is huge here in Indy, and I get excited all over again when I hear the faint hum of the Indy cars on the track miles away from where I work now. There's truly nothing like IMS or the Indy 500. If you've never experienced it, it's worth it at least once. Even if being in huge crowds isn't your thing, people watching is worth the trip, and everyone if ridiculously excited to be there on race day. I got to work last year's 500 also. Those who had been working thought the same as I did the previously year...wait you volunteered to work today (I was paid) but the wake up and time to clock in is quite early...say 4-4:30am. I damn happy I did last year, watched that final lap live at the track. Dan won, it was huge and I even got permission to try and see him in victory lane. I didn't see him beyond a glimpse, but it was all worth it. So I'd like to thank God for putting people like Dan Wheldon on the planet, even for a short time and they're stripped away from family, friends, and fans far too soon they leave a legacy. He was like the bird that still sings while it's pouring down rain...nothing phases the happy song. Bless his family and friends and all the fans that hold him dear. Not all were lucky enough to see him in person let alone have a conversation with, so for those who never did...anything amazing you thought could be true was. His charm could take over any room, his smile cannot be compared, and his attitude above all could lift you up out of the most horrible thought. Thank you Dan for inspiring me on the days when I'm not sure what I should be doing or where to go next on the little things too. Your autograph copied signed to me hangs in my office for that exact reason, inspiration.
Photo taken while standing on the track...
All images are my own personal shots taken on breaks or when I was leaving, just to be clear this wasn't done on the clock ;)