Confessions of an Unproductive Nomad

To Do list

Just as I had expectations for our world tour, I had expectations for this period of post-travel limbo. I was going to get so much accomplished.

Tina Fey, the MuppetMy alternate universe girlfriend Tina Fey put her finger on it when 30 Rock ended. As she told TIME Magazine,

“It’s kind of like a giant bluff is called, because of all the things you’ve said you would do if you had time,” Fey says of her new phase. “It’s like when you have five weeks’ vacation, and you say, ‘I’m going to clean my house and learn Spanish and weave baskets.’ Now I have to choose.”

We chose to look for jobs and see friends and watch movies. Sorting through the mountain of photos and video from the trip gets tedious, but the results are inspiring: we’re creating a photobook for each country we visited, with so many memories wrapped up in each image.

Next Stop spinesSomehow, I haven’t quite gotten around to editing those additional videos, organizing those computer files, or writing that e-book. And how is it that we’ve had months off but are only halfway through with those photobooks?!

Maybe it’s time to get a job. Why, with money left in our re-entry fund, do I feel that way? I’m certainly not the first person to long for the structure of a workday and the social interactions at an office- look at how many retirees wind up back in the workforce (are you reading this, Dad?). It’s frustrating, though, that a client’s deadline seems to carry more weight than a deadline I set for myself.

My boss once told me that I’m a workaholic. Why can’t I be a workaholic on my own projects?

And so, we are returning to the working world. Karen is the first-ever Farm Chef at Primrose Valley Farm, a CSA (community-supported agriculture) farm that delivers fresh vegetables to its clients throughout the summer. Besides cooking for the farm workers, Karen will be writing for their newsletter and website. Can video clips be far behind?

After exploring the possibilities far and wide (from Washington, D.C. to Nome, Alaska and beyond), I am returning to my previous employer, Plum Moving Media, in a new Producer/Director position. Plum’s mix of good people and hi-tech toys is hard to beat.

Subaru on the range

It’s not just employment. We also bought a car. Karen finally got that Subaru she’s always wanted, albeit a older model well-suited for the commuting that lies ahead of her. And we’ve moved into an apartment of our very own, one in which we plan to live for more than a month or two.

Boy, all this sounds so… normal. Lest you think that we’ve lost the fire in our collective belly, consider this: I did something distinctly un-American in negotiating with Plum. I asked them to pay me less money in exchange for more vacation days. They said yes.

Even so, going to work means that my time is no longer my own. Inking a May 1st start date on my calendar made me itchy. I felt like… I felt like… traveling! So I booked a flight to Costa Rica. Since Karen will be working, I’m going solo this time, embarking on one last adventure before the next phase truly begins.

Gotta get packing. Next Stop: Costa Rica!

Costa Rica guidebook

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2 Responses to Confessions of an Unproductive Nomad

  1. Margaret says:

    Ya know, I asked myself the same thing as I lounged on the couch rehabbing from my knee surgery…I just had no “get up and go” as I thought about the vacation boxes that we’ve accumulated these last few years. I’ve been saying that if I ever had the time I’d get them organized…sigh…Have fun on the trip!

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