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Enjoying his labor & the American dream it affords
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Amarinder Singh Kang looks over the shoulder of Sandeep Thind at the 1 Stop Market on the corner of Louise Avenue and Union Road. Kang has been working at the store since 2006 one year after he came to the United States from Punjab, India. - photo by JASON CAMPBELL

Amarinder Singh Kang loves his job.

As a clerk at 1 Stop Market he gets the opportunity to chat with customers that have become more like friends in the six-years that he’s been behind the register. Those that stop in to fill up at the Chevron pumps and those that stop by to pick up items on their way home from work have gotten to know him on a first name basis, and have made the environment not just cordial but personal and rich.

He has a deep respect for his boss, Harry Kamboj, and executes his job tasks accordingly.

It’s something that the native from Punjab, India – who immigrated to the United States in 2005 to be closer to his family – looks forward to every day.

“I’m somebody that likes to chat, so with all of the customers and people that like to come in and talk – it’s a perfect fit,” Kang said. “I really like working for my boss, and the people here in Manteca are great.”

And with five years of living in the United States under his belt, Kang doesn’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon. Last year he bought a house here in Manteca – carefully waiting and monitoring the housing market until he felt the time was right – and is happy to be close to his parents and his extended family.

He’s even picked up some American customs along the way. Kang has become a fan of the Oakland Raiders and likes to watch MMA fights when they’re on. He still keeps tabs on the Indian cricket team, and watches matches when he gets the chance – still harboring that desire to play the game he grew up loving once again.

But the universal tradition of hard work and success is something that Kang firmly believes in and tries to follow on a daily basis. It doesn’t matter whether it’s stocking the cooler in the back of the store, filling an empty spot on a shelf or teaching a new clerk how to ring up a customer while at the same time keeping that energetic spirit that has made him somebody that people not only trust, but enjoy.

It’s all about keeping his eye on the prize.

“It’s all about the people here for me. Anytime I’ve ever needed anything they’ve always been willing to help me, and that means a lot,” Kang said of the people in Manteca and those who come across his cash register. “That’s why I like to talk to them and make their experience a friendly one. I love working for my boss – he’s a great man – and I enjoy doing this job.

“It’s a chance to make someone’s day better.”