|Family living in car in Atlanta - source|
Anyway, this oil boom has led to a housing shortage... in Eastern Montana, of all places. But then just that night I learn a 2nd degree relative (technically once removed... erm...) is MOVING to one of these fields in North Dakota. (in a 5th wheel trailer with a daughter—so yes, housing shortage... I can tell you, I'm not sure I'd want to winter in North Dakota in a trailer)
And it got me thinking...
|Construction Grand Coulee Dam, Grand Coulee, WA|
My stepdad grew up in the 50s with his father, an electrician who specialized in the set-up of dams... you heard me, hydro-electric power—those giant things that block rivers in exchange for electricity... there was a TIME there weren't all that many, but post-WW2, America wanted MORE POWER... Anyway, he and his family moved all over the US as his dad worked on one dam and then another. He went to 3 high schools... for a while he and his dad moved on to the next place while his mom and sisters stayed (his older sister wanting to finish high school in a place she wasn't a stranger). I think it was hard on their family in some ways, but really developed character in others. And I think several families moved together—the same type of crew needed for each new location—almost like the military that way.
So is this happening again? Or might it? I can see a reasonable application of this model in wind. Windmills can be built pretty much anywhere with open land... and there surely is some specialized skill in the building. Now oil is limited to where there are oil reserves, so the set up there isn't going to jump place to place to place. But it just seemed there may, in this economy, be a new, necessary mobilization.
I wonder how long this stuff will take to come to books. What comes to mind is Steinbeck's Dustbowl stuff, but maybe that is the pessimist in me. Still, can you imagine living in a normal city, leading a normal life, and being uprooted to move to a trailer in North Dakota. (don't get me wrong, North Dakota has some charm—I actually think Bismark is a charming little city, even if I only spent a lunch there on my drive moving here from Oregon). But MAN, those winters! And the emotional upheaval of moving to pretty much the middle of nowhere... what stories might there be?
You have any first or second degree experiences with the new realities? You think any of them might make your books?