Home > Outdoors, Personal, Road trip, Travel, Uncategorized > $100,000 Cars and a few wayward thoughts

$100,000 Cars and a few wayward thoughts

September 10, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

Five days and counting…at least that’s what I think.

The past month’s main events:

  • Quit Job (Check)
  • Move out of my apartment (Check)
  • Read Travels With Charlie for the hundredth time (Check)
  • Drink lot’s of beer in Hawaii (Check, Check, Check)
  • Pack up car and head East (……)

It’s that last one that has me thinking. So far what I’ve done to prepare.

  • Bought a map of the USA from AAA and opened it up for 30 minutes. During that time I determined two important things: Kansas looks boring as hell to drive through and Rohde Island really is “that small.”
  • Conducted a Google search on microbreweries’ in America and bookmarked it on my computer for immediate reference when stressed.
  • Ate at home for almost an entire month to save money, only to go to Hawaii and blow a majority of it on $8.00 Mai Tai’s and silky smooth fluffy drinks with small umbrellas. (Those little things never get old)

So now since I’m sitting in Laguna Beach reflecting on the day’s events of people watching and drooling over $100,000 cars, I’m beginning to wonder if what I’m doing is all a big mistake. I had the job an entry level PR Pro would die for. I worked for excellent clients who were responsive, enthusiastic and willing to let me piggyback off their industry experience and form solid relationships with editors and analysts quicker than normal. I had a boss who was kind, understanding and willing to support my ideas. My coworkers were awesome, and even though Katie was always cold, I usually won the battle to turn on the AC.

At home I had worked my way out of Boulder Creek and into an awesome apartment downtown. My social life was good, I trained and competed in a few triathlons, and most importantly my spiritual life was taking huge strides.

So then why did I decide to change everything and turn my world upside down?

There are a few key reasons for my decision. The first, and most obvious to anyone who knows me, is that I HATE being chained to a desk. My professional life has always been jobs with face-to-face social interaction. Working at a desk while having to interact through voicemails, and email wasn’t cutting it for me. Reporters could blow off my email, my messages, my stalkerish follow-ups, and I couldn’t do anything about it. It drove me mad that I couldn’t just walk down the hall and chat with them. The desk, the 19-inch computer screen, was my reality.

The second reason, and slightly behind the first, was that I saw the walls closing in. It was obvious that I excelled at media relations. My writing, account management and account strategy all needed drastic help, but in the realm of social interaction I was solid. This quickly led me to the realization that I really only liked this part of the job. I hated the tedious work of compiling target lists and filling my mind with meaningless facts to appease a tough client. Instead I got the rush when I was talking to a reporter and forming a story.

Thirdly, and this may be the most whimsical of all my reasons, I have always wanted to take a cross-country road trip with no itinerary, little money and the potential to walk around a random street corner and to smack luck in the face. A few years back my parents gave me just about every book they could think about that supported the coveted road trip. I flew through them thinking about how cool it would be to do it.

Finally, and this might surprise a few people, I decided to do this because if I don’t, I will be one of the millions of Americans who always say “Coulda, shoulda, woulda.” We are a nation of action, at least if you buy into the rhetoric fed during elementary school, yet we tend to talk about what we want to do and then come up with excuses why we didn’t act. There are a thousand reasonable sane excuses I can make that keeps me from going East. I guess at this point they are just that—excuses.

Tonight when I fly back home and start to frantically sort my life out, I’m sure I’ll start to rationalize the need to stay. I’ll start by thinking I need to stay another week for my brother’s birthday, or until November for my buddy’s first daughter to be born. I’ll rationalize that I don’t have enough money (this could be very true) and will end up stranded in some rundown parking lot trying not to think about all those horror movies that started this way. But in the end those excuses will just drive me forward. The most wonderful thing about this trip, the one comfort that millions of people don’t have, is that I can always come back to a loving family and community if for some reason I don’t like the cornfields in Indiana or the brash honesty of New Yorkers.

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