Mines get hot as hell once you get down the bottom of the drift, but not near as suffocatin as further in where the vein’s runnin. It’s hard work, but good work if you can get it. They say a miner, he either got the nose for it or he don’t. And the one’s that do, well, they got themselves a job for life. Me, I got the nose. The crew I’m on, they follow where I say to go. I tell the crew boss I think the vein’s runnin over there in that direction, then that’s the direction we dig. Don’t fool yourself, there’s skill involved, plenty of it. Ain’t easy swingin a pick axe all day long. Quartz reef minin ain’t for everyone. Most men go bat-shit-crazy just thinkin ‘bout bein this far underground. Not me though, me and the crew I’m on, we climb in that bucket every day, head down here, do our job, and collect our pay; no bitchin, no fightin – no problems for the crew boss means no firin. You gotta trust these men to have your back, without that trust; too many of us never see the surface again. I ain’t planning to be one of ‘em. You think the corporation give a shit, they don’t. A man dies down here, the suits give his wife just barely enough to feed herself and her babies for a month, maybe less – it’s disgustin. But everybody wants to keep their job, so we don’t say nothin. The crew bosses, they’re alright though, they take up a small collection, then they make up the difference from their own pockets. They go ‘round every week or so, make sure everybody is healthy and eatin. It’s like a family, nobody talks ‘bout it, we just do it. I just hope it don’t pinch-out ‘for I do.
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