Labor Day not a day off for everyone

Labor Day not a day off for everyone

(MYRTLE BEACH, SC) - While many enjoyed Labor Day weekend as the last holiday weekend of the summer, there were many in Myrtle Beach who did not get that extra day off.

In fact, many people in Myrtle Beach didn't get any days off at all.

The service industry is a corner of the Grand Strand, and Myrtle Beach is something of a service town, as tourism is one of its primary industries.

But what many use as a weekend away from work, without the efforts of the South Carolina Department of Transportation, area roads could be flooded, covered in debris or have sinkholes left unrepaired.

And without the men and women working the region's hotels, restaurants and amusement areas, there may not be much to do on Labor Day weekend when visitors get here.

"Last Friday, I worked over 12 hours. And I'm working another job as a delivery (man) and we were open the entire storm and we had a record day that day," said Mike Linear, a line cook at New York Pizza on Ocean Boulevard.

Through thick and thin, and through storms like Hermine, the service workers of Myrtle Beach do not get holiday weekends off. That includes the one holiday weekend dedicated to working-class Americans.

"I've only been off six days since the week before Valentine's Day," Linear said. "I've been working every day since then."

There are not days off for the road and maintenance workers either.

Sunday night, the South Carolina Department of Transportation responded to a sinkhole on S.C. 31. Those same workers were still on scene at 12 p.m., on Labor Day Monday, filling in asphalt so the roadway could be reopened.

Some say the true measure of a service town is the attitude of the service workers, who measure the quality of a holiday weekend not by the time spent off, but by the time spent on.

"Well, Friday we closed at 2 because of the storm and we weren't open," said Gloria Linear, the manager of New York Pizza. "But Saturday and Sunday was great. We had a real good day and a real good night. We done real good."

It seems like something of an ironic ending to the summer season; the labor of working men and women, spending Labor Day weekend servicing a service town.

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