It has not been a horrible experience: Stefan has a decent job -- and in this economy, having a job at all is amazing. This has been the perfect place to learn to ride a motorcycle. I'm not sure we would have been able to get the Africa Twin titled free and clear anywhere else. There are a lot of adventure motorcyclists that are in this area or come through, and they have been wonderful to get to know -- there are quite a few people we hope to keep as friends forever. We have loved living in a HOUSE. And Albi's had a great time.
But this area just isn't for us. I won't go into all the many reasons, but I will say that the last straw has been my health; as of today, I'm now on an intensive anti-asthma/allergy regimen for the first time in 15 years, something I've only had to be on once before -- when I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area. I do not want to live this way again.
We will stay here for the rest of 2010, ofcourse. But we really are hoping that, a year from now, we are moving to or living elsewhere.
Where do we want to go? Back East. I'll be looking for jobs in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Virginia, West Virginia, the DC area, Illinois, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and even Kentucky. We'll entertain the idea of other states as long as the climate is neither desert (we really love trees) nor summers of endless 90+ days (we melt).
We hope we can find a friendly, low-crime community where Stefan can be a volunteer or reserve firefighter again (he does NOT want to be a full-time firefighter!), relatively near a large city.
First, however, one of us needs a JOB. I will start looking after January 2011. I will be looking for an opportunity to:
- manage/direct a program at a nonprofit, university or government agency.
- direct the marketing, public relations or other communications activities for a major project or program at a nonprofit, university or government agency.
- managing editor at a large international nonprofit
- program director at national nonprofits focused on women
- program director for an international law-focused nonprofit that delivers its program through a wiki
- marketing director for the continuing education/adult education program at a university
- coordinator of a nonprofit-focused program at a state's attorney general's office
- chief communications officer for a division of a large international foundation
- senior writer for program development at a large, international health institute
- directing a program that places media professionals in the developing world to train new journalists
- public affairs specialist at a federal office that manages several international programs
- director of communications in North America for an American University abroad
- public information officer for a conservation district
As for our plans for the holidays: we'll be sticking around here. Other than going to San Jose for work in January for work, I don't have any travel plans; we're hoping to still be able to do something fun on the motorcycles in the Spring. If we end up stuck here for all of 2011, we may even try to do a motorcycle trip in Mexico!
And before we go, we would still love to have visitors! Our guest room awaits...