What's so great about this recession?

I've lived in this great state for 25 years now and I've seen it's ups and downs. Fortunately there have been more ups than downs. Generally when there are downs, they had started in the rest of the country first and then migrated to Alaska a year or so later. When it finally made its way here, it would kind of fizzle out. Times have changed some.

When I first moved to Alaska, my car was damaged in shipment. While it was being repaired, my new neighbor was kind enough to take us to go grocery shopping. During the ride there he looked at me and said "Say those words I seldom here". I though he had been alone way too long, but I still said What?". He said "You know, like Wal-Mart, Target and like that". You see, there weren't many big stores up here at that time.

But like I said, the times have changed some. There are more and more large companies or corporations. For example, Wal-Mart/Sam's Club is now the #2 employer in the state in the private sector. When they react to what's happening in the rest of the country, they react in their stores in Alaska right away.

So when it's announced that we are in a recession, we Alaskans are saying "OK, now what". We're not having the layoffs like they do outside (in the lower 48), businesses aren't closing left and right, we haven't had a bank closed since the 1980's. What are we supposed to do? We don't know, so we are now on guard. We not buying anything we don't have to. We're not getting our cars repaired unless they are unsafe or break down. We are afraid to spend so that's feeding this recession.
I admit that my spending habits have changed. My military retirement isn't enough. My part-time job is commission. With sales down everywhere, that means my pay is less. It's probably close to $7K or $8K lower than this time last year. That means you have to tighten your belt.

I know I'm not the only one either. Some of my neighbors are fully retired. Their income is fixed, but their expenses aren't. When they planned on retiring, they didn't plan on a recession. So their belt is a little tighter too.

Times are tough, but so are we. Things will get better. We have to hang in there so don't let things get you down. Go see what is going on in your town or your state. Go build a snowman, go do some photography, take up bird watching or do some volunteering at a organization that is helping those less fortunate than you. Sitting around dwelling on what's not going right will only bring you and everyone else down.

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robin andrea said…
One of the reasons we hike, take photos, bird watch, and plant our gardens is to balance the crazy times we're living in. We can't change how things are, but we try to find something beautiful everyday to gaze up.
Dave said…
Same here Robin. We have to escape. :)