Back home in Quebec, we have this little thing we call the Construction Holiday, "Les vacances de la construction". See, even on the website they have to use quotes, as if they can't say it with a straight face. I seem to recall it being referred to as "la fete de la contruction", which is a lot more fun, evoking images of parades and parties and lots of beer being consumed, confirming that charming stereotype of the quebecois as a fun-loving, jolly people who work to live and know how to have a good time, tabernac. It's also known as "shut down", and it happens in the last two weeks of July. I worked in manufacturing for three summers and shut down was always a peaceful, quiet time, a two-week period when you didn't have to wait in line for 20 minutes in the cafeteria for Wednesday's pizza special, a time when your supervisor took off to Old Orchard or Shediac or Daytona Beach and you could hide in the stacks of the Filling Department with your latest multigenerational family saga. Not that I ever did that - no, I just hid the book in my lap under my desk.
I'm looking forward to my holiday, which should happen in about a month. I don't know how much "down time" I will end up taking ("down time" - so much nicer than "unemployed" and even "between jobs at the moment"). But I plan to spend it reading and rebuilding my website and experimenting with my cameras and canoeing and swimming and camping. If my down time finds me snowshoeing and iceskating, however, I will know it has gone on too long.