Thursday, September 27, 2012

New Normal Loading... Loading...

Few updates, been busy lately. The business isn't exactly rocketing off to the moon, and I'm looking for proper work now (as opposed to the night job I took to hobble along while working on the business), and I'll just have to see what happens with the business.

Before I moved here, everyone was ready and eager to share with me their predictions of my experience when I got here, and I can't think of a single one that came true. Now that I'm looking for proper work in my field, I disproved another one:

"You won't be able to make 'California money' in Kentucky!"

Actually, I can make more. If anything, my talents are more in demand out here (though I'll be the first to admit my selection is limited). I'm entertaining some high paying offers and a slew of others 10-15k less than my California money. A few cost-of-living calculators indicated I needed to make 50% of my California pay to maintain my lifestyle in Kentucky, so even 20k off should still put us quite ahead.

Actual cost of living here is a little hard to pin down. Mostly, I think, because we've been scraping and saving while looking for work and living off savings. Some foods are cheaper, while a few are more expensive. Oranges are definitely more expensive, but meat is cheaper. Housing is the main difference (which is most welcome, as it's usually the highest).

What we paid for a medium sized 1 bedroom (we had downsized to save money) will rent us a 3 bed 2 bath house with a 2 car garage. I can't wait to have a garage to fill with fun tools for fun projects.

I told myself that because the weather was the only thing good about California, I wasn't allowed to complain about it after moving here. But I think I like the variety more. With the weather comes nature. Birds, bugs, and butterflies, all contribute to the experience out here, and I really like it. The paved-over desert that California is, had crows, brown sparrows, and coyotes that stalked into the suburbs to eat your pet. Here, there's colorful songbirds, geese, (fenced) horses, deer, just kind of hanging out. This place is more colorful and more alive.

I should note that I've only been able to enjoy the passive freedoms Kentucky has to offer, because without regular income, I'm not ready to spend money on all the new goodies available to me.

Despite only recently shifting into job hunt mode, I'm already antsy for instant gratification. I'm applying to other places, but some of these companies are big, and it takes them time to process resumes. Meanwhile, I'm trying not to gnaw my arm off waiting.

Working at my part time job has been kind of nice because it's such a change of pace. I'm working at Sonic, which is the second time I've been able to put my money where my mouth is.

Before we moved, I told everyone I wasn't going to get a job because I was going to start a business. Understandably skeptical, they would answer, "But what if you can't find one?" To which I replied, "I'll work at Sonic if I have to!" When the local Sonic put up a big banner trying to get people to work there, I made it my first stop on my part-time job search. It was a fry cook job that was part-time, nights only, and should pay barely enough to let us eek by. Surprisingly, it was a good fit. As a bonus, I wouldn't enjoy it, which would drive me to work harder on the business instead of taking a proper job and settling in (which I have done in the past).

The other reason I wound up going with this job was the lack of mental stress. I tried to start a business while at my last employer, and found that when I came home I was mentally exhausted. Not like, "I'm tired, I don't wanna." More like, "I-- I'm-- uh... *DROOOOOOOOOL*" I had plenty of interesting and fun projects that I wanted to do, but just couldn't get myself to do them. I'd just stare at the blinking cursor, devoid of any creativity. Eventually, I couldn't even do my hobbies! I wouldn't go to the range, wouldn't draw, wouldn't write (explaining my hiatus), I couldn't do anything except veg out on video games or Netflix.

But when I came back from Sonic after working for 8 hours, eased into bed at 1am, thumbed through my emails, and found some potential work? I shot up like a bolt, and stayed up until 4am working on the project. The mental energy was ready and waiting.

I surprised myself when I realized that I didn't think I hated the job. In fact, I felt like I liked it. The work is simple, I'm constantly moving, a good rush is fun, and I like the people I work with. There is the added bonus of knowing that something real was done at the end of the day, which is a feeling you miss on a primal level only after spending years flipping ones and zeros instead of burgers.

In the meantime, I've been engrossed with the DayZ mod for ArmA which will get its own post. Not engrossed in playing (not buying stuff, remember?), but engrossed in researching, learning, and watching youtube videos.

There's some exciting news coming up next week which may frame my faith or insanity (depending on your perspective) in this series of life changing events, so look out for that.

Right now, I'm just trying to chill whilst waiting to hear back from the companies to which I applied.

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