Well thought I'd post a little update for those who know/care what I'm up to. Sitting out of work on the union side of things right now, we're so shot for work in the state right now it's not even funny. After I finished my 2 months of training in June, everyone figured it would be about a month and all 50 of us in my class would be out to work. Wrong. I'm hearing there's about 25 of us left, why I still haven't gone out, I don't know. My best guess is that there may have been guys calling the training office and dispatchers about every other day saying they're going to lose their house if they don't go to work. I'm nervous, but not that nervous. A "squeeky wheel gets the grease" kind of thing is what I'm concluding. I've been calling about once a week, called the office on Tuesday and wasn't pleased with what I was told. When I asked if 2-4 more weeks of no job was what I was looking at from this point, I was told that no predictions could be made whatsoever. I called one of my coordinators today who essentially hustles the contractors for our jobs, she said 2-4 weeks would be a reasonable estimate, I can live with that. I was told to keep hanging on and wait for a job. This is about the only part of this gig that irritates me so far. We're under a probationary period for 1,200 working hours. Until I surpass that amount, I cannot hustle my own job, I must be dispatched by the training center coordinators. Essentially, I'm putting my well being in their hands. I'm not complaining, they've invested a lot of money in myself and everyone else who attended 2 months of free training, room and board, and the opportunity to make a run at this profession the best way possible in this state, IMO. This is a pretty good deal for someone who really wants to do this for a living, this was just an absolutely terrible year to jump in, I suppose. Last year, all 50 incoming apprentices were out to work in 2-3 weeks. Can't blame the program, only the economy. It's just a little tough in years like this to make ends meet when you're going without a regular or consistent paycheck through 2 months of training, then have to hold on for a job for an undetermined amount of time. Still not going to bash the program, I'll endorse the hell out of it even though I'm flat out of real job right now. Still think it's a great deal, still think people should do it, and I don't regret the decision whatsoever. Our training coordinators and everyone involved with the apprenticesehip are top rung people bar none, nobody works harder to make sure we do well. But, as luck would have it, I got rounded up on a slow work year. Shake it off, keep going, I'll look back on this some day and laugh until I cry. Spring is supposed to be busy. Hearing winter might be looking busy, not sure if that means busier than summer, or a busier winter when compared to years past. Either way, it's good news. Currently I'm driving truck for my dad and hand labor as needed. He has enough work until mid to late September, I can probably make ends meet until then if need be. Just a bummer is all, I'm determined to stick it out because I know this is an opportunity I cannot let pass me by. If there's no risk, what's the point, right? Just a little frustrating given the circumstances, but it is what it is. Sorry for the novel, just thought some might like to know what's going on. Just waiting for that killer dispatch running a D8 or a blade. I'm going to admit right now my chances are probably shot for that this season, hopefully next year depending on where I end up.