Saturday, October 17, 2009

Doldrums

Brian and I are in the doldrums. Not literally, of course, as we’re hunkered down in the house on a dark, damp Seattle afternoon and not on a sailboat out in the equatorial calms of the Intertropical Convergence Zone.

What stands between us and the actual doldrums, which right now seem infinitely preferable to the figurative ones that plague us here, includes the following: money, a cruising sailboat, a house that needs to be sold, a wonderful little boat called Shady Lady that needs a good home, and a bit more money.

Now I’ve been pecking away at saving some of the albeit modest pile of money that we need, but timing can be friend or foe. In Brian’s case, the heady exhilaration of graduating from the UW in March with a Physics degree, a publication to his name, and a boast-worthy GPA collided with what is now being referred to as the Great Recession.

Luck and prudent financial choices on my part have kept us in relative comfort and no one is trying to repossess anything. But launching a life-dream is another matter, and today, Brian remains an underemployed, yet brilliant physicist, who is a wiz with technology and spawns invention ideas with similar frequency to a teen typing text messages.

And I, after nearly eleven years in Seattle, after luring my entire immediate family here, and after happily enjoying both the bleak and the magnificent aspects of the Olympics, Cascades, and Puget Sound, finally feel a desperate need for change.

So what do we do to get out of these doldrums and into the other ones (which rumor has it we will curse once there)? Sell the house—or wait? Sell the Shady Lady? What if we’re here another summer? What if the job market remains dismal? Should we go elsewhere to save? But where? If only we believed in crystal balls and fortune tellers or time travel or anything that would at least provide an order of events—a list of tasks to begin doing and checking off.

Maybe the answers are simple, and being too close is blurring our perception. We’re ready for a new and alternative way of life—another adventure—and a path to our future pursuits. Not everyone wants to pick up and leave like we do. But I’m finding that it is hard to untangle the roots that have been put down here, and it is hard to know that what I want most to leave is what many want most to have. And I am also sure that there are many experienced sailors out there who would quickly admonish that the water is not always bluer where you think you want to go.

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