Jubilee : Enjoy 50 Stories from 50 Years of Life, by Caperton, Luann Joyce
Note: Supplemental materials are not guaranteed with Rental or Used book purchases.
- ISBN: 9781449734671 | 1449734677
- Cover: Paperback
- Copyright: 1/18/2012
It was amazing to me how they bound books. I paid close attention to each station the workers on my team filled. Being experienced in running "production lines" I was already imagining the possibilities of what could be learned at this huge place. A young woman was paired with me as my trainer and began explaining to me what to do: "Clasp your hands firmly onto each stack of books as they make their way down this belt, pick them up as a group and turn them quickly up then down for inspection." I was practicing the "move" as she demonstrated. "The binding should be good quality. No ripples or tears, etc." I looked at an example of "acceptable" and one of "unacceptable" as she continued. "Then, quickly stack them into the box and grab the next "grouping" and do the same." Over and over we practiced, as the clicking and zipping of the machines sounded. It appeared to be an easy job, but one dare not get behind. If the procedure's not done fast enough, the books begin to pile and a mess is the result. My mind went back to the funny yet horrible scene of "I Love Lucy" where she and "Ethel" were working in the chocolate factory. I was in the best physical shape I'd ever been in and confident that once turned loose, I'd be able to make my boss proud. But for the first night or two, the "trainer", Joy, was to stay by my side. This 5 foot 7 of a female had a somewhat gruff voice that did not seem to match the sweet smile that shone over her face. When dealing with serious matters, her face was still and solemn as if she had a lot on her mind. Her eyes were the prettiest blue, but were dimmed by perhaps strain or chosen lifestyle. While she labored alongside me and with others on our line, a couple of tattoos became visible on her arms. I was grateful for the tips Joy had given me, and felt somewhat comfortable with her there. Each night, the hours flew quickly by, as our "crew" pushed hard to complete each assignment. Nearing the end of my first week on the line, I began to have some problems, as my arms and wrist cramped and ached. I'd had sore muscles before with new activities, but this was strangely different. With each night that passed these physical problems became worse and worse. After my shift ended each morning, I'd go home to soak my forearms and hands. I'd hoped it would decrease the swelling and tightness. I'd had to remove my rings so they wouldn't cut my fingers. After several nights working, I was only hours from finishing my first week on the floor. The books continued to be forwarded one by one on the belt. As I grabbed each stack of the hard backed books, and flipped them up and down, I could not feel anything on my fingertips, but sharp pains shot through my wrists and arms. I cringed and bit my lip trying not to "cry out" which would have been, to me a sign of weakness. It was only the ending of my first week at Banta, and here, I didn't know if I could "go on". At 6:30am, the end of the shift, it was nearing sunrise. The lot lights were still on overhead outside. Making my way to the car, I carefully pulled out my keys, opened the door and eased in. Lifting my hands up to place them on the steering wheel, I stopped and laid my head on it instead. Cupping my arms and hands against my body for warmth I began to cry. "Lord, what is wrong with me?" The star like overhead lights now glistened as I pleaded through my tears. "I need to be able to do this job.... And look at me; I can hardly move my arms and wrists. Why is this happening, Lord? I don't understand." Suddenly, a "Tap, Tap" sounded on my car window. I jumping and took in a quick startled breath. "LuAnn, are you alright in there?" The young woman who'd trained me was right outside my door. "What?" trying to regain my composure, "Yes, I'm okay." I didn't want to worry her with my problems. I didn't want her to see sad, pathetic state. "Can I get in and sit with you a minute?" she asked. "Well," I paused. "Yes. I guess." I unlocked the other door. Joy got in the passenger side and closed the door behind her. The morning light was making its way across the Banta lot "Have you been crying, LuAnn?" her gruff voice not sounding as gruff as before. I dropped my head and tightened my jaw, determined not to start up again. "I'm alright", I said. She was not fooled by my short answer. "Tell me, what's wrong?" she persisted gently. I could not fight the tightening of my throat one second longer. As quiet tears made their way down my already salty cheeks, I began to tell of my heart's question. "Before I took this job at Banta, I asked God if I should stay at my old job or come here. He told me to take this job and now, I can't even do it. I just don't know why He brought me here." My unsteady voice trailed off as I looked out the driver's side window, lifting an aching hand to wipe my face. Joy waited until I'd gained my composure, and began to speak. "LuAnn" she paused "I know why He sent you here." I stopped breathing for a second, thinking I'd misheard what she'd said. "What?" I apologetically asked. "I know why God sent you here, LuAnn." Her blue eyes still looked tired, but different somehow as she finished her confession. ...