today i got some news that is very likely going to sound a lot more out of the blue to you than it does to me, but that’s just because the situation has been so weird and wishy washy that it hasn’t seemed worth writing about it.
now here it is, though, and no sense beating around the bush: my job is ending in two weeks.
as my supervisor was kind enough to state very clearly, this decision is not at all a reflection upon my performance over the last few months. it just turns out that shifting the design culture of a large company from the inside out requires quite a bit of a political maneuvering, we hit a few snags that were a bit larger than anticipated at this stage of the game, and, well, i’m the temporary contractor who wasn’t really planning to stay with the company that long anyway, so it makes sense that i’m the first (and hopefully only) casualty of budgeting rearrangements.
honestly, a lot of me feels relieved. i first heard that this might be possible about a month ago, but it was always at some unknown future point and it was never clear how real the threat was and it was impossible to really do anything with the news other than use it as ulcer fuel or ignore it, and so i did my darndest to do the latter as much as possible. but it still took its toll, as there is only so much patience i can muster for showing up at work and not really knowing if there is anything to do other than watch meetings be postponed and stretch simple tasks out over several days to fill the time. especially when i can think of lots of other things i want to be doing.
which leads well into the next reason i am not devastated by the development.
one of the major questions that i hoped to answer by taking this job was that of whether i am in a headspace for longterm full-time employment right now, and the past three months have provided quite a bit of useful data that has begun to suggest an answer quite a bit earlier than i anticipated. i have learned that there is a lot to be excited about in the professional design world right now, and i enjoy being a part of the conversation about where things are going. at the same time, however, i have learned that i still basically think of myself as a student, that i have Lots of stuff i want to work on for my own reasons that have nothing to do with any company that i know of at the moment, that the travel bug has not left my system, and that i am increasingly convinced of the merits of finding ways to work for myself.
with all that crystallizing in my head, i was honestly starting to get a bit antsy, and once it became clear that it was possible the job might not last the full 9 months after all? well, let’s just say i had no difficulty coming up with ideas of what i might like to do.
the anxiety, as usual, will hinge on money. the last month of my travels and the first month of my move and transition to employment put me once again in the red, and i had been employing a strategic approach to paying that back over time because i thought that my income was assured for a while. so it’s frustrating to have to deal with that. but not unmanageable. and i am hereby stamped as genius for adhering to my policy of sinking money into camping gear instead of furniture in an attempt to limit the number of things i will have to store, sell, or give away before i am able to uproot myself again.
on that note, look at what else i did today!
those wheels are tiffanie’s bike, which she lent me, and which i will now perhaps return. the thing that should jump out at you about the fact that you see those wheels is not really the bike, however, it is the fact that my new tent? it’s like one big window. this is nice in circumstances such as the present where it is pitched inside where there is little crosswind and you are still inside a sleeping bag for some reason. it is also nice, however, when it is inside your backpack weighing securely under 5 lbs. even with the rainfly and footprint, or when it is pitched outside in the summer and you want to separate yourself from bugs but not from breeze or scenery. and summer is the season which is about to be upon us. and did i mention that i might have more free time?
so yeah. options abound. and it is somewhat symbolic to me that i decided (and it was a somewhat spontaneous decision as well) to go ahead and buy the tent today of all days, with timing such that i was actually in the process of erecting the last major component of my bare bones self-sufficiency kit right when my phone rang with news to suggest that i might not want to buy the few pieces of furniture that i had decided to splurge for after all. i might have hesitated tomorrow, and i have many days ahead of me to decide if i want to trade it in for the other tent i was considering that is a fair bit cheaper. but today? today i just kept clicking the poles into place. i felt the metal bend, watched the fabric billow and tighten, listened to the silence on the phone and the buzz of the world out the window, and said: “oh. ok. how much time do i have?”
so here come an interesting two weeks, folks. on we go.