Project Leave Chicago: updates

19 May 2014

Ok, so I mention how I’ve felt this desire to take a break from my beloved city of Chicago. And rather than just let this be daydreams and idle talk, I want to take some action to even see if this could be a possibility.

Once I realized this was something I wanted to do, it sort of triggered this unexpected (but should have been expected) questioning of “what the heck do I want to do with my life, for reals.” I bounced from MFA to MA in Secondary Education to… this hazy area I’m in now where I’m still sorting it out. It’s just more, I know sort of where I’d like to be… but I don’t know what I want to do.

But in some of the random searching and questioning that I’ve done.. this is where I’ve gotten thus far:

Tempe, AZ – I’d looked into Arizona State University before, which lead me to researching the area. It’s affordable, from what I’ve seen online, and there are Friends Meetings there that look good. And the university too. Downside is that I don’t generally agree with a lot of the politics coming out of Arizona.

Albuquerque, NM –  Not sure I would have considered ABQ until doing just random internet searches about places in New Mexico. It’s more liberal in this area. There seems to be a lot going on here, and it’s got a university too. Rental prices seem to be in an affordable range too — though a lot of places have pet fees. Good hiking and mountain access here too.

Portland, OR – Actually, it’s more a suburb of Portland… But there’s a job at a particular company up there that seems interesting. I’m not quite sure how qualified I am though. And, well, though I’ve heard good things about the city, there’s something in particular that keeps me from the pacific northwest. And there’s no deserts. But I honestly do not mind snow and cold at all, so that part I could get used to.

Connecticut – I can’t remember the actual city, but this one is also tied to a specific job with a specific company. And this one I do feel qualified for. So it’s just a matter of getting all of my application materials sorted out and cleaned up, and then just going for it. It’s not necessarily where I want to be geographically, but hey, the job seems great.

Museum Studies – Not a physical place, but well, another career area I’m considering. So far I’ve only looked at UIC and ASU’s MA programs. I love the idea of researching every sort of topic, designing and building different exhibitions, sharing that education with others… It’s so exciting. I did however look at a certificate program as well. But it would mean staying where I’m at now and doing courses in the evenings for a year… for a certificate… But you know, a good way to test the waters, right?

And that’s where I’m at… 4 cities and two job possibilities. And of course even more questions than when I started.

I sort of miss how right after college I just up and decided it would be Chicago. I had no job (or interviews) lined up, no clue what I’d be doing. I just moved. And my parents were ok with that. Now, at very just shy of 30, I know my parents would highly disprove of me just up and moving to a new city without any sort of plans. (Not that they could really stop me, I am an adult after all — but it’d be nice to have their help and support for such a move.)

As much as I don’t want to plot and plan and toil away at this… I do need to put a little thought in this.

  • Mike

    Portland only gets about 3-4 inches of snow per year and the average winter day is low of 35, high 45-50.

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