There’s a conversation on twitter about other jobs library folk had prior to becoming librarians. While working my way through uni, I spent several years as a dockhand on the loading dock at Grace Bros Burwood (now Myer). Over the course of 5-6 years, I worked my way up from casual dockhand to second in charge of the entire dock. Most of my time was as a regular casual though I did spend 18 months working fulltime while I paid off a car. I became rather adept at manipulating pallet jacks and stacking boxes…not to mention crushing boxes down for recycling.
I went to uni in Wollongong and when I changed to fulltime work, I planned to take a couple of years off uni altogether. However, I really missed the mental stimulation so after several months, I started studying two nights a week, driving from Burwood to Wollongong (about 90 minutes in peak hour) after work. The only subjects available in the evenings were in the History & Philosophy of Science (HPS) dept which I loved and ended up majoring in. I had initially been studying Philosophy and Computer Science, and had always wanted to try HPS but hadn’t been able to squeeze it in. Ultimately I finished off with majors in Philosophy and HPS and finished all the core components of Computer Science.