Barbara Jones, the head housekeeper at the Soldotna Inn, grimaces at a load of laundry during a recent Saturday at work. Jones, who has worked at the Inn for more than three years, said she likes the people she works with but that laundry can be a pain.
Photo by John Hult
Name: Barbara Jones
Occupation: Head housekeeper
Employer: Soldotna Inn
Employed here for: three years
Alaskan since: 1986
Originally from: McMinnville, Ore.
What made you decide to move here? “I came to visit my mom and ended up moving here. I came to visit and I got stuck.”
What keeps you here? “I like the summers here, and it’s a really nice area. My family’s here, too.”
Job description: Making beds, vacuuming, dusting, putting things back in their place, laundry
“It’s just about your main housekeeping, basically. Stay-overs, if you’re good enough, take three minutes for the whole room. Checkouts take, if you’re doing them by yourself, approximately 15 minutes, maybe 20.”
What do you like about your job? “I like the people I work with. I like my boss and everyone’s respectful, and that’s about it that’s what keeps me here.”
What don’t you like about your job? “Laundry. After a while it piles up and before you know it you run out of towels, sheets and then you’ve got to run downstairs and throw it all in the dryer and carry it all upstairs again.
“When you don’t have extra help, it gets hard. It’s a lot of work. It’s very hard hard on the body, because you’re using your whole body.”
What is the most common item guests leave behind? “Lately we’ve been finding a lot of plug-ins for cell phones. That’s the main thing, people leaving behind things or their cell phones. Clothing items and stuff like that, too, but we really don’t have a lot.”
What was the wildest thing you’ve found? “Magazines. Do I have to get specific? I’m sure somebody will be able to figure that out.”
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