This past holiday season was easily my best one ever. Not in terms of gifts, or having fun, or anything like that. For me, the holidays are the busy season, the money-making season, and if I burn the candle at both ends and work hard, I can pull down 6 months worth of income in 4 weeks. This does require sacrifice, of course, and if I had kids or anything I probably could not get away with it. But my dogs don’t care about me being gone for Christmas, so it’s all good. I work for a local contractor, one who specializes in heating and cooling repair. He is a nice guy, and it is a good job, but the thing is that I am the only certified HVAC technician there who doesn’t have a family. All those other HVAC techs want time off to be with their families, so I am more than happy to pick up every shift they want to give away. Heating emergencies happen a lot around the holidays, thanks to crowded houses and overstrained furnaces. When I have to go out after hours, or on weekends, or best of all on a holiday itself, I make a lot of extra money for the same HVAC repairs I normally do. Even better, aside from getting paid more for the same work, people are very generous and offer me tips, or plates of food, after I get their heating system working again. I am not officially supposed to accept tips, one of the rules of this HVAC contractor, but I always take the food!