Thursday, March 2, 2017

Joining The Rugged Yuppies

[I wrote this a couple months ago but didn't immediately publish, for reasons which will soon become clear.]

It's November and my life is about to change.

It's my second day in Denver. Lakewood, actually, right this second -- although I haven't stopped moving since I got here. The weather is still unseasonably warm and Thanksgiving is a week and a half away. I've found my way to another coffee joint -- five bucks gets a bagel and coffee, the rental fee to sit still for a bit to process the week.

I'm trying to figure out how to quit my job.

I've been offered a job in Denver that I cannot turn down. It's a return to the engineering I so desperately miss. Even better, it's in a town I've been wanting to move to since I was 22, staring at the world with wide, unfocused eyes.

This trip didn't start that way. Originally, I was coming down to visit Alaska and take a break. The camp had me stressing out and after getting an earful, he'd mentioned he'd be in the area and maybe I needed to get out of Dodge.

As usual, he was absolutely right. I made plans immediately.

But they changed. Rather abruptly. I went from "a few days to relax and get my head on straight" to "this is a chance to look at apartments and price furniture and holy crap, I'm moving to Denver."

I don't have a start date yet.

I haven't put in my time at Storm.

It doesn't quite seem real.


But here I am.

This news has changed the way I'm seeing the town. Really, it widened my view -- every time I've visited in the last few years, I've stopped by the same six places. Now I'm exploring and getting lost, finding my way to a grocery store or a Target or a hole-in-the-wall brewery and wondering what the best route might be at different times of day. I'm making the drive toward a future office and finding that the commute is actually really pretty. (Who knew?) I'm exploring the outskirts, thinking about where the views will be the most spectacular or where the closest light rail stations are. And I'm wondering how far out of town a girl has to go to get a good view of the space station. (Answer: Huh. Not far at all.)

It feels momentous, even if it shouldn't. People change jobs all the time. People move all the time. Heck, it's not even the first time I've up and changed states.

Still, the new lens on a familiar place has altered the weight of this decision. It feels so much more substantial. It may be the simple fact that this is a change for the sake of change. I'm not fresh out of college, in dire need of a job. And I'm not languishing in a temporary spot, hoping for something more permanent to come along.

This time? This time it's a shift toward progress, a job that puts me back into a world I miss, and gives me opportunities down the road if I can keep my eyes open for them.

This isn't just for now. This is for the future, too.


Epilogue: Oh my goodness.

Well! My time at Storm came to an end this past weekend. Now I wait for things to fall into place so I can move to Denver and really get started on that new phase of life. I'm going to be hitting the road for a bit and making some of those visits that I haven't been able to for the last couple of years, and then ... something while I wait. Part-time employment? End-of-semester tutoring?

Generally speaking, my optimism knows no bounds ... but I'm at a bit of a loss right now, folks. I'm happy to have the downtime but boy, I've been looking forward to that engineer thing for awhile.

Sigh. Patience, Ashley. Patience. Just a bit longer.

No comments: