Voices of the shutdown: "It's not like we're completely out of a job, it's just we can't go to the job"

Mike Reed, a contractor at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, is so concerned about the government shutdown that he's already paid a visit to his local unemployment agency.

"It would take a couple of weeks to get a check from them [unemployment benefits] and in the meantime I have to look for work and I don't want to take a job that pays less than what I'm already getting. But I might have to do something to see if I can get some kind of money coming in," said Reed.

For Reed, it's an odd and strenuous position to be in.

"It's not like we're completely out of a job, it's just we can't go to the job. All they did is leave phone numbers we can call and all they say are recordings saying we're still on furlough or something," said Reed.

"It's been pretty stressful; my wife doesn't work so I'm the only income," he added.

Reed's company is allowing their contractors to use vacation hours during the time off so they can be paid. But Reed has very little vacation time, only enough to cover a day or so.

Reed is relieved he was paid the Friday before he was sent home, but is concerned about his next paycheck.

"If it [the shutdown] doesn't go too long, I'll probably be OK. This Friday, it will make a difference on my paycheck and I'll have to take money out of savings, so if it only goes for a few more weeks I can probably get by," said Reed.

As for what he thinks about the situation in Washington, Reed says, "I don't think it's the right thing to do. I know it's got a personal affect on me but it's also affecting a whole bunch of people and it just doesn't seem like the correct way to solve their differences."