Catching Up Again

Wow, its been too long since I posted anything, so here's a quick Overview of the last couple of months.

My job has been taking up lots of my time! On the plus side, at least I am making some money, which of course has gone into buying lots of stuff for the trip! The more I buy, the heavier the bike is... so maybe the job is bad?

My job involves some travel. I work for a company called PSAV, or Presentation Services, Audio Visual. Litterally, they do the audio visual work for presentations. Almost goes without saying! I set up speakers and PA, projectors and screens, microphones and laptops, for use in meeting rooms, training sessions, and exhibitions, etc. The company has "in house" contracts with hotels, typically the "best" top level hotels. So for example in Edmonton, we have an office in about 10 hotels, where there is a director and 1 or more AV techs.

Since there are some busy times and some slow times, if there is a big gig, the company may move techs around between hotels. There may be 6 techs to set up, then one or two techs actually run the show, and 4 guys come in to break everything down.

I don't have a single hotel, or director, that I work for. A lot of our techs mostly take mass transit. Edmonton is kind of big, spread out (not compared to Los Angeles, but still its a city!) so if you live on one end of town, and the hotel at the other end needs a tech for 4 hours, I'm the guy they call. Taking the bus or light rail might take an hour or two to get to some of our hotels!

I was hired to be a video camera operator, but I only do that a couple times a month. I used to be scared of audio systems. If you've ever seen a big mixing board, holy cow, there are a lot of buttons, and when you do it wrong, EVERYONE knows you screwed up! Eventually I'd get dropped into a show and be running the whole thing. Eeek! What helped was watching some of the really good guys, and learning some tricks... and realizing that even the really good ones have problems sometimes. Not a life or death world.

PSAV also has a hotel property in Jasper, the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge. Jasper is about 4 hours west of Edmonton, in the Canadian Rockies. I've been up there more than 10 times in the last 8 months. Normally I only go to a place for bigger jobs, and especially for Jasper, if I go, its usually with a van load of gear, to augment what they already have.

Twice though, recently, I got to ride my motorcycle to Jasper, and got paid $0.42 cents per KM, plus I get the hours too! So 4 hours wages, plus about $150 (each way!) to ride my motorcycle into Jasper, in the amazing Canadian Rockies. What a gig right? Almost everytime I've gone there has been something awesome to take pictures of, so I always try to take my good camera with me. And since the motorcycle gets around 50 miles to the gallon, I'm making money!

The irony, to me at least, is I'm getting ready for this big awesome Round The World motorcycle tour, and the way my route is looking now, I won't actually be visiting Jasper on the offical tour. Good thing that I've got some good pictures already! I am considering making a bit of a detour to go though at least part of the Jasper Park, we'll see.

The next few posts will be covering all the motorcycle related stuff I've been doing since April... Stay Tuned!

By Carlin Comm posted on 2012-06-22