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Alta States

Jan SImpson - coming full circle

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Page 4 of 4

The years flew by. The fun just kept coming. Still you had to eat. And being a waitress only worked in wintertime at Whistler. Jan needed summer work now. "In the late 1970's," she recounts, "Drew Meredith worked as a driller/blaster on a road construction crew down by the new Bayshores area. He needed someone to clean the crew-house, make lunches, do laundry, carry equipment - and stuff the holes with dynamite." She giggles. "That was me."

But that was just the beginning. For Jan soon moved on to Mid-Valley Construction and the gravel plant for her next adventure in road building and labouring. "In those days," she explains, "Mid-Valley Construction consisted of a hardened bunch of men and women who could drink until sunrise and still put in a 14 or 16-hour day in the blistering heat produced by hot asphalt. I learned to suck it up." Another big happy smile. "Besides, I had a great tan and developed muscles I didn't even know existed..."

Still, it wasn't all fun and games. "Toad was aptly named because of his resemblance to one.... He was the road supervisor at Mid-Valley and used to get a kick out of coming out to the gravel plant and speeding up the production so I would have to bust my ass on the conveyor belt just to keep up. Which I never could. He would walk away chuckling while the rest of the crew would slow it down again and help me catch up. They got a kick out of watching me too!"

Next Week: old friend Drew Meredith convinces Jan to become a realtor.