Thursday, January 6, 2011

My "Jack-of-All-Trades" Husband

Pete while in Panama during Operation Just Cause
A typical scenario at our house involves the five of us sitting around the kitchen table eating and talking.  We might be chatting about pigs because we are eating pork chops.  Then the conversation will veer off into pig pens, and Pete will say proudly, "I used to work in a pig sty.  I was even a super-duper-pooper-scooper in a fifteen horse barn."  I'm sure you don't want to know the details. He also worked as a cowpoke, horse trainer, tractor driver, firewood cutter and fence line fixer; all while in high school because he wanted to earn money.

Or we might be rehashing the dance recital when Katie had to do quick changes behind the stage because her performances were so close together.  The gabfest will take a sharp turn to the left after Pete confesses, "When I was a stage hand for the Ziegfeld Follies, I got to help the dancers change.  You’d be amazed at how fast we changed them."  I bet he did!  Any college male would die for that kind of job.

Sometimes we have problems around the house, as most home owners do.  I call "P-e-te," and here he comes.

"What's wrong?" He asks.

"The toilet is about to overFLOW... oh, no!" I step out of the bathroom.

"Oh, don't worry.  I used to be a plumber.  I can fix this." 

Just like Pete can fix garbage disposals, faucets, washing machines and dryers.  He can remodel rooms, build furniture, carve wood and paint.  He acquired these skills while putting himself through college as the campus handyman.

While Pete was at Texas A&M/ Galveston, he also loved to scuba dive and sail.  He was on the sailing team and turned into a boat mechanic, deck hand and boat cleaner; all for extra moola.

Another random evening we may be chewing the fat when Pete admits he castrated twenty hogs and became a llama mid-wife while he lived in Iowa.  He even worked as a vet tech for a while, which is why he knows so much about animals. 

Sometimes Pete and I share stories with the kids about when we were dating.  One story in particular always cracks me up.  I was having a problem with my car.  Pete took a look at the engine, got a hammer from my apartment and banged on something in there.  The nerve of him!

"Don't worry," he said.  "It's just the throttle linkage."

"Okay, dear."

Whatever that is.  I just smiled real big and batted my eyelashes, like any other Southern Belle would do.

I later found out he was a Porter car dealer, an auto-parts store clerk, a welder and pipe fitter.  In the Marines, Pete was a nuclear weapons security guard, rifle range coach and machine gun squad leader.  Oh, what fun!

In his career, Pete has been a Marine sergeant, diesel truck manager, area manager for a marine surveying/ appraisal office. 

I asked Pete what he had to say about his well-rounded work history.  This is what he said:

“It took me a while to find my calling; I didn’t rush into anything.”

But he sure gained a lot of experience!

And guess what?  Pete is about to embark on another adventure.  He will soon have another feather for his cap.  My husband is starting on his MBA next week. ~sigh~  I am so proud of him!

Talking about all the jobs Pete has had in the past, you must remember his very first one as newspaper carrier.  You can read about it here.


Lisa said...

Wow! What a great guy! I really enjoyed reading this post! It was fun!

LKHarris-Kolp said...

Thanks, Lisa!

Sylvia Ney said...

Whoa! How cool is he? ;-) There is something to be said for changing jobs frequently - mucho skills for life!

Jeni said...

That is a wondeful post Laurie.... so sweet! Not a wasted lazy moment in his life. A good man. A great role model, husband, father and all around person. hmmmm, just like someone else I know ~ YOU!

LKHarris-Kolp said...

Pete's been working for 30 years. He has always been a hard, dedicated and loyal employee.

Thanks, Jen. You're so sweet!