Building the Dam Story

At the end, if there is success, one wonders how. Through this wonder one discovers the story. This blog is dedicated to that discovery.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Dam Daze

Sometimes I imagine the heat of it all, down in the canyon, mid summer. I imagine walking inside one of the diversion tunnels, where the stale air was said to reach 140 degrees or more. I see myself riding a huge jumbo rig back up against the rock inside this tunnel, handing off the dynamite or Hercules to my partner to set into the rock. The sweat is dripping and we don't notice it anymore, our job is getting done. Our work at hand is so important to us we nearly faint from heat exhaustion but barely notice the stagger in our walk, the weak grip we take as we exit the tunnel waiting for the blast to complete...
The exciting times of working and living so close to the bone, being so taxed, unaware of anything else but the work...this is not the life of kings and queens, but rather of somebody that has left behind peaceful desires for a paycheck and yes, the knowledge I've done a good job. Yet, being in the tunnel, suffocating from heat, sweating to exhaustion, muscle to muscle, the heaviness of it all, it seems as if it's all I ever wanted. Otherwise, knowing the ridiculousness of the job, (cutting into walls of canyon rock for what good reason but to build a dam that would "control" a river for the benefit of development?) wouldn't I walk right out? Take a ferry across river, hike my way into the mountains, live off the land as I went? But nobody did that. And if they did they were no hero.
Sometimes I imagine what we'd be like if we didn't follow what we were made to believe. Yet we do follow...and we do the work...and at the end of the day we are too tired for much dreaming. And then we return...into the heat mist of the next day...