Friday, November 30, 2012

The Queen Gets Down and Dirty

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving (and Black Friday, and Small Biz Saturday, and Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday!...I'm out of breath!). I took the week off from blogging but don't worry, I'm back!

I decided it was a good idea that the Queen get out there and actually do some physical junk removal - after all you can't be a complete expert unless you've done the job yourself. Here's an exciting (ok - that was supposed to be sarcastic, but I actually really enjoyed myself) play-by-play:

A Day in the Life of a Junk Removal Professional

The day started out at the shop. We spent some time sorting through what was on the trucks to pull out the recyclables. After that, we were ready to go.

I rode with the King and one of our other workers in Truck 3.

While Truck 1 and Truck 2 went off to other jobs in different areas, we headed down to Belmont and on the way there, hit challenge #1: traffic. When we left the shop, it was prime commuting time and this is what we had to face:

Once we got there, still on time, we did a 1/6 of a truck for a nice man who was starting to clean out his house in preparation to put it on the market.

After this job was finished, it was off to Somerville for a repeat customer. This customer, along with her siblings were in the process of cleaning out their deceased parent's house. We arrived at the job and were expecting about a 1/2 truck worth of stuff based on our previous visit, but as the customer took us around the house showing us the various items, it was clear that it would fill much more than 1/2 truck...more realistically in the 1.25 truckload range.

Since we knew the customer didn't want to stay there any longer than she needed to (ie, we wanted to try and avoid having to make a trip to the transfer station and come back), we had to think on our feet. The King quoted her 1.25 truckloads and we got to work.

First, we pulled out all the metal so we could take it to the scrapyard which was about 10 minutes away. It was my first trip to a scrapyard, kind of a cool place - lots of stuff going on and fun looking machines (yeah, I have a thing for heavy machinery - what do you expect, I used to work in construction!):

After unloading the scrap metal and freeing up some room in the truck, it was back to Somerville and back to work. 

 The Queen in action :)

We packed that truck to the max - all 18 cubic yards and more. I had doubts that we were going to get it all on there, but we did it. It took us a few hours to get all the stuff out of the house and packed into the truck. The customer was very happy with the outcome. Next, it was on to the transfer station. I thought the scrapyard had a lot going on, but it was even more true for the transfer station:
Some of the piles of sorted materials

The scale to weigh the truck (on our way out after we dumped our load) - check out Truck #2 over there on the scale on the left heading in with a full load. 
I like our transfer station because they sort through everything that is dumped and recycle a large percentage of the materials. It saves us time and labor sorting through items and also makes it easier on days when we have a busy schedule and can't sort items ourselves. Of course, in this instance we had all trash - if there are jobs that have items that can be donated, we will bring them to various charities in the area depending on what it is, for example The Habitat for Humanity ReStore:

After the transfer station, we were off to a job in Chelmsford. This customer was doing a bathroom remodel project and had just ripped out all the studs and drywall. We quickly loaded the truck and left another happy customer. Next it was on to an estimate, also in Chelmsford. The customer had a shed that had been damaged by a tree in her backyard that needed to be removed - a victim of hurricane Sandy. We assessed the situation and gave her an estimate.

Phew! The day was done. It really gave me insight into (and appreciation for) what a typical day is like for the guys (and girls! ;) and let me tell you, I was tired by the end of the day - we pretty much went non-stop from 8 am until almost 5 pm. 

Question: Hmm... I don't have a question this week - do you have any questions for me?  :)

Last Words: I always think it's interesting to try something new and while I'm usually on the paperwork/marketing end of the business, seeing what our guys do day to day really gave me a new perspective on the business and how we do things. I look forward to another opportunity to get out there again!


  1. Thanks for supporting Habitat for Humanity!