though still vividly recalled, I was a camp counselor on Lake Ontario.
years after that I was a counselor once more, this time for a camp that
trekked throughout the southwest mountains and deserts. Kurt Vonnegut had once been a part of this trek.
From the cook Cameron, who put Tabasco in everything, I learned to love
steel towers in the electrical switch yard of a hydroelectric plant,
where 220,000, 330,000, and 440,000 volts buzzed and snapped all around
us as we cleaned off the grease and glopped on thick silver paint while
climbing the steel towers like rubber-suited monkeys. One drip of
paint could result in electrocution if it hit a hot wire below.
coworker of mine was knocked unconscious, but fortunately left dangling
by his safety belt by just such an errant drip of thick silver paint.
Bill, a journeyman lineman and a full blood Tuscarora Indian, literally
ran across the high steel beams, 3-4” wide at most, and grabbed our
coworker, slinging him over his shoulder and running back across the
steel, clambering down the tower to bring him to safety.