All Aboard One of the Most Unique and Sought-After Summer Jobs in the Midwest
The summer job is a rite of passage for millions of teenagers every year. For many, it's the first step into "the real world," where you have a boss, you have coworkers, you have responsibilities, and you get paid. Oftentimes, these jobs are less than desirable, the kind of grunt work that only teens are willing to do to make a buck. Not all summer jobs are bad though, in fact, there's a gig that is one of the most sought-after summer jobs in the midwest.
Folks who have a lake house or you live on the water are basically separated from the rest of the world by a body of water. Those folks still need to have access to the things we landlubbers have access to - things like mail. How is a mailman supposed to deliver the mail if there's no road leading to your house? By using a mail boat, of course!
All Aboard the Mail Boat
Lake Geneva, Wisconsin is home to a super popular and hard-to-land (no pun intended) summer job - a jumper on the U.S. Mailboat Walworth. Delivering mail by boat seems simple enough, except this boat doesn't stop at each home. Huh? Yeah, the boat keeps moving, it is up to the jumpers to do just that - jump. They start at the front of the boat when they jump onto one of the docks on the route. Their job is to make it to the mailbox and back in time to jump on the rear of the boat.
First, You Gotta Make the Team
As I said, a job on the Lake Geneva Mailboat is highly sought after. Out of the hundreds of young people interested each year, only four jumpers are chosen - that's a pretty exclusive club. In order to narrow down the field, the high school and college-age applicants literally have to try out for the job.
The Job is More Than Just Mail
While delivering the mail is an important part of the job, it's not the only part. Jumpers also serve as tour guides - that's because the mailboat is full of tourists and guests who are there to see the spectacle. And yes, jumpers do miss the boat from time to time - that's part of the fun. The Lake Geneva homeowners get in on the show too - they strategically place their mailboxes to make it more challenging for the young jumpers. After all, how fun would it be if nobody fell in the lake? That's boring.