At the beginning of the week Trevor and I had a nice Trip to Walla Walla, Washington. Trevor has been applying for 911-System jobs (he currently works as a paramedic for a non-emergency transport company), and was accepted to test with Walla Walla Fire District. It was a 5.5hr trip that we made in about 7hrs. We stopped to eat as well as several potty breaks.
I really enjoyed seeing the Columbia River Flood Basalts along the gorge (above), and Trevor enjoyed the rolling hills once we got out of the gorge (below).
We had planned to stay in a Budget Inn, but on the way up there we had drove by one and decided there was no way we were staying in one of those. We ended up staying in the next cheapest hotel...the Travel Lodge. The sign outside said it was recently renovated, but I think all they did was put tile flooring in the bathroom. It was clean though and we had a HUGE king bed - apparently I hog the entire Full we have at home, so Trevor was pleased. He quickly learned that it doesn't matter what size bed we have, I still like to snuggle up next to him... and he didn't have any more room than he does at home! ;)
Check-in for his test was at 7:15. I dropped him off, and drove back down the road to Milton-Freewater, Oregon for gas. Washington gas prices dont make sense. It was $3.15 in Walla Walla at the cheapie stations. I drove less than 5 miles south and paid $2.85. I had a nice guy come out and pump the gas for me, and there was no sales tax! Not sure why anyone would pay $3.15 for gas, when they can just drive across the border and save $0.30/gallon... 10 gallons and you save $3! I can think of alot of things I can buy for $3!
Anyway, on the way back from getting gas, I drove around and looked for houses for sale. They have decent prices, and nice sized back yards... however, their floorplans are a little off...but maybe that was just the architec?
As I sat in the parkinglot at the Test, I was suprised at how many people were finished in less than an hour. Trevor said the test normally takes him about 2hrs, and these people were done in 45 minutes! To pass the test, they had to score 75%, and only the top 20 scores were to move on to the Physical Ability Test and Interview. Some of the people were comming out and driving away, while others came out and sat in their cars. I assumed the tests were scored as they left the building, and those who sat in their cars were waiting to see if they were in the top 20. Trevor came out at the 1hr mark. When he got in the car he gave me the bad news. They weren't hiring. I was shocked. Why would they have all those people drive all the way there to go through the hiring process if they didn't have any positions open! Apparently, they're required to have a "List" of hires incase something happens and they have to hire immediately.
We waited around until 12:30 for the test scores to be posted. They ended up only posting the top 20, which Trevor wasn't in, so we headed for Oregon with the intent of doing some sight seeing and fishing. We were 40 minutes from Walla Walla when Trevor received a phone call. I was just about to get on the freeway when I heard it was someone from the City of Walla Walla. I went past the onramp and pulled over. They had moved Trevor to the #20 position because one of the top 20 hadn't showed up for the Physical Ability Test and Trevor had been #21 (out of about 100 people)! We turned around and drove back to Walla Walla.
Trevor went through the Physical Abilities Test with one of the fastest times. Afterwards they told him how many points they earned for certain times... Everyone else knew this ahead of time, prior to completeing the course. The time limit is 10 minutes, and normally you just have to be within that time. Trevor said he could have gone way faster had he known ahead of time that it was scored based on time. I timmed him at just under 2min. 30sec. and they timmed him at just over, well within the 10 minute time limit. Trevor did awesome!
We ended up having to stay the night because interviews were scheduled for the following day. The night before, after we had checked into our hotel, we had gone for a walk and found the Budget Inn. It looked super nice and brand new! We opted to stay there the second night, and were really impressed with it. BRAND NEW... even smelled a little like paint still... really nice... AND we had a huge bed agian! AND it was a few dollars cheaper than the run down Travel Lodge!
The next morning, Trevor interviewed at 8:40, which went really well, then we went back to the hotel, he changed, and we checked out. We decided to head home through bend. We went past a HUGE lake (Lake Walula, I beleive, below). This way took us a considerable amount of time because we made a few long stops and a detour. Leaving around 10am, we finally made it home around 7pm.
Overall we feel the trip was a success. Trevor is now on a list, and if they hire in the next year and a half, he will be called. We do have to wait a couple of weeks to find out where he is ranked in the list though.