my dream of having a free day today wouldn't be realized as the census assigned me 34 new cases last night. maybe "new" is not the right word, as these are old cases that previous enumerators (including myself) have tried on multiple occasions with no closure. crap cases as i like to call them. good thing they were all within walking distance, all in cambridge. and there was enough cases i could milk it for a full 8 hours of work.

i left the house briefly to pick up my prescriptions at walgreens. i came back and had some yogurt with granola for breakfast.

i also spent the morning doing some census ground work, sort through the addresses, figure out the managing companies, look up owner info and find their phone numbers. right when i was about to take my afternoon break, a bout of heavy downpours hit the area. i had an umbrella but it was the small one, which was no match for the downpour. i made it home anyway, clothes and shoes slightly damp.

for the second half of my shift, the rain had stopped, but started back up again once i left an apartment complex. i managed to get 2 full interviews there which was a surprise: one with a girl who was an in-mover but didn't fill out her census back in brooklyn so agreed to have me enumerate her, the second was with a chinese girl who previously never responded to the census but opened her door this time and once i broke out the mandarin she answered all my questions about her and her two roommates.

for the most part i was doing well. as these cases were "new" to me, there was a lot of discovery, like finding out the management companies for places i wasn't familiar with. i should be able to close more tomorrow, if i can get ahold of the property management companies that is. i ran into another census worker while she was crossing the street. i yelled out "hey census worker!" and she turned every which way except towards where i was standing so she didn't see me. she was on the other side of the street by then so i didn't bother trying to catch her attention.

i was 30 minutes before finishing up my shift when a woman saw me on the street and asked how my census work was going. i told her it was okay, the cases were getting tougher. it was only then she revealed that she's actually the field manager for our area, in charge of the supervisors. so this was technically my boss's boss. i actually know her from the comments she leaves in case reports, things like "try again" or "work more." from her comments you'd think she was a stern task master but she seemed very nice in person. she told me most likely our work here locally will be finished by the second to last week of september, so just 2 more weeks maximum. so at least now i have a tentative deadline i cam look forward to. she said people will start getting laid off, starting with the less efficient enumerators. she said she wish she could keep everyone onboard until the end, but this decision comes from her own boss higher up.

after my chat with her the rain started up again, some heavy downpours. my heart just wasn't in enumerating anymore, especially these final cases i had were all complicated ones that required finding proxies in apartments i couldn't get into. i decided to try calling the management company tomorrow, and take it from there. i waited until there was a slight lull in the rain and fast walked home, clutching my census bag so it wouldn't get soaked, never mind my wet shoes and socks.

i had 11 cases still active out of 34 i was assigned today. just 6 were inactive, which meant i managed to close 17 more cases, not including that one in-mover interview i did. somewhere in brooklyn a census worker will suddenly see one fewer address in his/her case list as it magically gets completed 250 miles away.

as difficult it is to get all these crap cases, it could be worse. at least i'm still getting work, and local work at that. they haven't had to move me elsewhere, like medford or everett. i still don't know how they decide who gets what cases, and i have no idea how i measure up compared to other census workers. am i worse? am i better? the fact that i'm closing cases that other enumerators had a hard time working makes me think i'm doing okay. there's just no way to gauge your progress. if they ask me for feedback when this is all over, that's something i'd like to bring up.

i cooked up another pair of burgers on the foreman grill, stank up my kitchen a little bit despite running two fans to blow the smoke out the window. i paired them with a can of black cherry seltzer and finished it off with a mango popsicle.

tonight was the start of the NFL season, an opening game between the houston texans and the kansas city chiefs. everyone picked the chiefs to win and by halftime they were well on their way. i had the game in the background while i did other stuff.