Tales From the Enumerator… First Day in the Field Census Canvassing

So my first day “Out in the Field” canvassing addresses for the Census Bureau is completed.

It started out a complete mess. I was supposed to pick up my hand held computer last night, but my supervisor told me to pick it up this morning instead. I was planning on working my DOE job… but picking up this computer was an essential so I decided to pull a 10 hour day today w/ the Census Bureau.

I went in to pick it up… and it turns out that only about half of the hand held computers were working because of a Nationwide Sprint problem is what we were told.

At 1:00 they finally got the network up and running and I headed back into town for the second time (since our supervisor sent us home the first time… I got mileage twice for going into town and at $.50 a mile… that added up to almost $25.00 right there.)

By the time I got into town… I headed straight to my AA (Assigned Area) and began my duties. I didn’t run across any problems and the only dogs that really bothered me were the ones that were inside most of the houses that just got annoying listening to their yipping constantly.

I did get an interesting letter from a reader of my blog:

…My training was scheduled to start tomorrow. On Friday, someone called to say it had been moved from the Hawaii Kai library (2 miles from my house) to the LDS church in Kailua. Your experience at the church came roaring back to me and I told them I was no longer interested. Truthfully, I had been having some serious doubts about whether I could do it, especially if it was a 40 hour work week. I’m retired and have a part time job doing background investigations for the federal government. I also have several extracurricular volunteer activities. I tried a few times to get an accurate description of what the job would entail but it seemed the people in the census office only read from scripts. Friday night, the assistant crew leader called to make sure I had gotten the word about the location change. I told him I had dropped out but asked him a few questions. Finally, someone who actually had answers. He told me they hoped everyone could work at least 25 hours a week and that it did involve knocking on lots of doors. Here in Hawaii Kai, that would have meant walking almost the entire shift. He was very nice and invited me to come tomorrow morning anyway to hear what it is all about. I don’t plan to do so as I’m confident I made the right decision. I hope they were able to get someone to take my place. If it hadn’t been for your blog, I probably would have blindly forged forward and regretted it for 10 weeks. I hope you enjoy the job.

I’m glad my horrors have helped at least one person. All in all, not a bad day at all. I can tell my calves are gonna be sore tomorrow… but I’ll get used to it.

It will be nice to get back to the DOE job tomorrow, and as I’ve said before… this is gonna be a long 10 weeks.

2 Responses

  1. So, I’m curious. Does the summit of Mauna Kea get included in the census, for that matter, Mauna Loa as well? There is real estate up there as well!

    • Yes the Summit of Mauna Kea is included as a “Structure”. I would have to be paid to go up there personally to see how I would classify it. Unihabitable? Multi-unit? Single Structure? Removed? Missing? etc….. If you guys have an address up there… then it would be probably classified as non-residential and I’d just skip over you. Temporary sleeping quarters don’t count.

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