Well, I am very sorry, dear readers, for the huge time lapse since my last entry! Lots, both good & bad has happened in the last 2 1/2 months. It is mind boggling to think that a year ago we were only a couple of months into our big adventure, living large in Vietnam and completely enthralled with the freedom of traveling.
Back here in our newest reality, the good news is Jim got a job almost as soon as we started looking which was GREAT! This economy is proving to be a very difficult one for us , as well as most other people. He’s working at Schwan’s doing sales and he really loves it. He loves being out and about, visiting with customers, and it’s an easy sell product. The only issue is that it’s a lot of hours and bad hours, as in about 9am-10pm every day which makes it difficult to spend any time together. But right now we’re happy he has it.
I have had a much more difficult time of it. It seems I am either way under or over qualified and this, combined with the huge number of job seekers, has made it tough. In early November I did get hired on for a part time, seasonal job doing retail at Dosha NW Salon & Spa. Any of you that know me are probably laughing your asses off as you know that is not my type of gig at all. In fact our dear Ron, upon hearing the news, said “But, don’t you have to be pleasant to have a job like that?”.. ha ha Ron. Believe me I was extremely “pleasant” when I told him what I thought of that comment!
So, anyhow…. it pays almost nothing and I work with a lot of perky 20′somethings but it does have it’s perks. First of all, it’s $$ coming in which we need at this point. Also, it is a very nice group of employees and we have a pretty good time there. It’s a bit of a commute downtown but all in all it’s fine. And, looks as though I may be asked to stay after the holidays which would be good..again, certainly not a dream job but at this point I’ll take it! I continue to job hunt on my days off and had a fairly promising interview last week so we’ll see how that goes. It is disconcerting that every job I apply for has hundreds of other applicants as well, certainly nothing I’ve ever encountered before.
Ken & Wendy’s new house is moving slower than planned ( what else is new) and so we are still living in the camper. That in itself is not so bad and earlier this week when I wasn’t feeling well I reminded myself that last time I didn’t feel well I was freezing in India with no heat in the car, hotels, cold showers,etc. and completely miserable so this is a huge improvement! After we completed the first floor they hired framers to finish it up and it’s always fascinating watching people who actually know what they’re doing! In 3 weeks they put up three floors and the roof is now on, windows and HVAC are going in and siding goes up this week. Very exciting..for them since it’s going to be such a great house, and for us because we can kick them out of their current house so WE can move in! Pretty interesting to think that we’ve now been living out of a bag for 16 months.
The bad part of the last couple of months is how incredibly much we’re missing being on the road. We’re still in contact with some of the friends we met along the way, some are home and dreaming about traveling and a few are still on the road and I’m so jealous I can taste it. Funny how we thought about coming home and the excitement of seeing everyone but find that since we’ve been back we mainly only think about being gone. I can admit that a part of that is because I we have still been living out of bags and not had our own furniture and so on, and part of it is because I haven’t had a consistent schedule with job hunting and working different hours each week, etc. But, we truly have the bug and I am already researching our South America trip. Originally we had thought we’d wait 5-6 years before the next extended adventure but I’ve got to tell you I can’t see us lasting that long! My main goal is to attempt to figure out how we can earn some money on the road so we don’t feel we need to come home to get jobs again. We had also originally thought we’d buy another acreage but not sell next time and instead save up the money for the trip and just rent it out or whatever while we were gone. Now we’re thinking we may just continue to rent Ken & Wendy’s house for a couple of years and then be able to take off without having to worry about property. It’s a toss up with interest rates so low and house prices dropping but then, until I get a decent full time job we can’t afford to buy anyway so that solves that for now:)
So, for now life goes on. While dreaming of far away places, checking out airfares, and reading other peoples RTW blogs, I am focusing mostly on being grateful. Grateful that we have such great family they were willing to not only take us in but to let us stay this long. Grateful that Jim got a full time job and I have a job, at least for now, when so many people do not. Grateful that my big decision as commune chef is whether we can afford beef tenderloin or pork tenderloin and not whether or not we can afford to buy anything. Grateful that America was finally smart enough to make a good election decision which will hopefully get the country moving back in the right direction. And, mostly grateful that we have such an amazing life.. we’re happily married, healthy, and have had many great adventures so far with still more to come. Most of the people who crossed our path and touched us so deeply in the last year will never have such opportunities and possibilities and we are truly blessed.
And so, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you. We wish you all the best this world has to offer!
Lots of Love, Jim and Rhonda