Missing Someone I Never Really Knew

I don’t watch that much television, but I read the other day online that a member of the Pelletier family of American Loggers fame passed away. He was only in his thirties and by all accounts seemed to be a friendly, outgoing, decent person.

I used to watch that television show religiously, because it was one of the few shows on television that portrayed an honest, hardworking family. The show was about their logging business and sometimes, it showed how difficult it was to work with family. By watching the show, I became familiar with the family members and some of them were real characters on television. It is amazing to me that 10 children coming from the same parents can all be so different and yet work together to make the business thrive.

I started watching this show at a time in my working life, when I thought there were no decent people left on earth. I was working as a temp and although I enjoyed the job, the office politics were getting under my skin. I just couldn’t understand how my co-workers, who were well-paid, had great benefits, including many paid holidays, could be so miserable on the job and not work together. There was constant in-fighting. I wish they had watched this show!

Watching American Loggers changed my perception of people and the working environment. I watched them deal with the good and the bad of every day work. Some days, it was a good day, but then the next day, there would be a rollover or 3 trucks would breakdown at once, or the mill would call and say, no more wood today. It’s a tough business to run, but they make it look easy. They take pride in the work they do and deal with their problems with patience and mostly perseverance.

The show went off the air in 2011 and I still miss it. I need that positive re-enforcement to keep working hard in spite of difficulties. I watched the re-runs so many times, I feel like I know these people. I’ve been to Millinocket several times and ate at their restaurant a few times. I’ve even been up the Golden Road. Its beautiful country, but very rugged! I understand why they had so many problems with the roads and their trucks.

I got the news about their loss on my Facebook page and it bothered me to hear that news. I’ve never even met this person, but yet, I feel a loss for this family.  I admire and respect this family for all they’ve done for their community, which includes working for free on community projects and providing jobs for their area. I guess I feel bad, because they lost one of their own. I always want the “good guy” to win. They always try so hard to do the right thing or get the job done correctly and on time.

Sometimes, I feel that I’m the only one that has bad luck. This summer has been a scorcher! I haven’t felt like doing much of anything. My virtual assistant business is slow and some members of my extended family are not feeling well. This kind of news brings me down, because I feel helpless. I want to do so much and yet, it feels like I can’t get going and do it.

This is the hardest part, I think, of being a virtual assistant. You work alone all day. You have to find new clients. There’s a constant need to either keep in contact with former clients or try to find new ones. You also need to try and get referrals from your clients, which provides new clients. I’ve met and sent some proposals to potential new clients, thinking they would be great to work with, but in the end, they didn’t see the need for a virtual assistant or couldn’t understand the concept of working virtually.  I continue to try to reach out to everyone I meet, so I can build up my business.

I often think of the words of Andrew Morin in American Loggers. He said, “You need to know the bad times, to know the good times” and I guess he’s right. Right now, I am working hard and it is difficult for me to reach my goals.  I guess these are the “bad times”.  I am hopeful that things will get better. Some virtual assistants quit, when the going gets tough, but I will continue on, just like the Pelletier’s of American Loggers.

Their persistence continues to pay off. They now own part of an insurance agency and they created a new division of their company, where they design and fabricate custom-made long trailer beds.  I guess the lesson to learn is that from time to time, losses occur, either on a personal or business level, but I just have to hang in there and use my time to keep learning new things, connecting with new people and updating my skills! Prosperity will come in time.

I hope one day to be as successful as the Pelletier’s of American Loggers fame.

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