Boy, the last month has been completely unexpected. First of all, the job I left Dosha Spa for, Direct Travel World, turned out to be a complete bust! I give the owners credit for building a company but they are very unorganized, I was offered literally no training tools and they decided to completely change the structure of the company between the time I was hired and when I started so nothing was as I’d been told. I spent lunch hour of day 1 crying in my car and telling Jim I wasn’t sure I could do it. However, as always, once we discussed options and had a plan I felt a bit better. Since the job was only 4 days a week (not 5 as I’d been told) and from only 7-2:15 we just decided at least it was a consistent schedule and I’d suck it up and hit job hunting for something else full force.
I spent 2 weeks sending out dozens of resumes, calling on jobs, filling out applications and going door to door to drop resumes. Nothing much was coming of it in this tough job market but at least I was feeling productive. Then, miracle of miracles, I got an email from an Elizabeth at Grand European Tours (where I worked for 10 years prior to our RTW for anyone new to this blog) saying she got my email from my friend Jo and she was moving to Italy for 1yr and wanted to know what travel insurance we had on our RTW. I responded to her, of course, but also to Jo saying who is this person and can I have her job??? Within 24hrs I was on the phone with my old boss talking about options and the next day was offered a position back at GET. I was never happier than to walk into Direct Travel and give notice.
After a long weekend I started back at GET 2 years to the day I was last employed here. It was like an amazing homecoming, they had 2 boxes in storage of some of my old files, the computer desktop was my same old photo I took at the Melk Abbey, all of my old friends were there, etc. Just fantastic. I wasn’t able to come back at quite the same position and, unfortunately had to start over with being low man on the seniority totem pole. Apparently, HR in California doesn’t think 2yrs is an acceptable “leave of absence”. LOL, but I guess I can’t blame them there. However, starting benefits at GET are vastly superior to anything I’ve had since we’ve returned and, for that matter, to most jobs out there so I am content. I am here in my super-sized cubicle, surrounded by photos from our RTW and looking forward to more travels to come.
Because of the job change we were also able to move our horse, Bug, back to the barn where we had boarded her while we were traveling. It’s more money but I was just not as comfortable with where we had been boarding her for the last 4 months. She had dropped quite a bit of weight and when I brought it up the woman said “oh yes, I had noticed she was having trouble chewing her food well” but she had never brought it up to me. That started warning bells ringing. So, back she went to Sunshine Farms in Oregon City to hang out with her old pasture friends. We’ve all sort of come full circle… Jim in a new industry but working with his friend Mike, me back at GET, and Bug back at her old farm. Dear Maddy is really the only totally new change going on! I guess the phrase “the more things change the more they stay the same” is accurate.
We’re starting to plan our 20th Anniversary trip to Jamaica for 2010 and hoping we’ll be in Europe as well, now that I’m back at GET. We’re also renting a beach house for my birthday in Nov. Since my 40th in Australia was such a bust we decided we’re doing a “redo”. Can’t wait to walk on the beach, have hot toddy’s in front of the fire, and just chill. For now just enjoying the summer now that our heat wave has lifted, going out on the boat and camping.
Other than that, I feel as though a huge weight has been lifted. Jim says he feels he’s got his old wife back, and things are just easier than they were one month ago. Life certainly threw us curveball when we came home and now things are changing again. It certainly keeps things interesting.
With that said, we’d still rather be on the road! But, reality bites sometimes, and for now we’ve got a good place to live, good jobs, a great new dog and life is good. We’ll just keep rolling along and see what tomorrow brings. We’ll enjoy all that we have and start planning and saving for Central & South America. Best wishes to everyone we love who has been so supportive both during our high & low times. As always, Living the Dream! Cheers, Jim & Rhonda