A LOT Has Been Going On!

Sorry I’ve been silent the past few weeks but wow, it has been quite the whirlwind!

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Try to handle the cuteness in this picture if you can. I ❤ Bonkers and Osito.

I couldn’t say things publicly but I was in the midst of making some big changes. You may have remembered my musing at times about finding some workamping gigs and my planning on doing Amazon Camperforce in the fall months. Well, I interviewed for three different workamping gigs and was offered positions at all three! (For the curious, they were at Yellowstone National Park, Cedar Pass Lodge in the Badlands, and also Lake Powell Resort in AZ.)

I couldn’t believe that three different people so quickly wanted to hire me! I was extremely flattered, and I made sure to tell the two employers with whom I decided to not pursue employment that I was going to be taking a job elsewhere and my reasons why. I decided to go with Lake Powell for many reasons.

Lake Powell is only 75 miles from where I am currently located, and the weather would be nicest. I’ve been there many times, and I love the area (did I mention there is a huge, huge, HUGE lake there?) Plus, the pay was pretty good, the housing was very, very inexpensive, and last but not least, I already knew people who lived in the area, both in Page, and also my friends here in Kanab. I thought it would be a good way of easing myself into the workamping lifestyle, and it gave me a lot of options, RV-wise. I could easily move my current RV there (the big fifth wheel) by having someone transport it for me, and not have it cost an arm and a leg. To move the fifth wheel to either of the other locations would be HUGELY expensive. Or, I could sell my fifth wheel and look into buying a smaller rig, with a different tow vehicle, before I would move in a few months.

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I took this pic from the beach that is located just below the Wahweap RV & Campground at the Lake Powell Resort. The difference in the colors you see in the rocks across the water shows how high the water used to be in Lake Powell, compared to today.

So flash forward to a few weeks ago. A friend asked me if I might be interested in pursuing a full-time position as a campground supervisor at Lake Powell! So I went and interviewed with who will be my future boss, and spent a few hours there, meeting some of the employees and the outgoing supervisor. They wanted me to think about it over the weekend and I did (a lot) and then we talked that following Monday, and they wanted me to take the job!  There are three permanent employees, who are all in what they call Lead positions, and then the rest are temporary, seasonal workers, and I understand that some of them are returning. Hearing that makes me feel better – if you keep coming back year after year, there must be something good going on there.

I should mention – during that weekend while I thought about the job, I was also able to see a lot of family members that I haven’t seen a ton of over the years. My younger brother, (who long time readers will remember is an amazing runner who has done several marathons and (now) four ultra marathons!) traveled out to the Phoenix area to run another 100 mile trail race. I am so proud of him for having completed it in 21 hours, 27 minutes, and 32 seconds!! He was pretty amazing, as always. The course was a 20 mile loop that they ran 5 times. He led the race in first place for the first 80 miles (and that includes his first 20 mile lap at a pace of about 8:30/mile.) He was only overtaken at about mile 85. He came in third overall and set a PR for himself at this distance, beating his first two races by about 7 hours!!

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This pic was taken from higher up than the beach, toward where the employee campground and lodging location is. My phone camera just doesn’t show the elevation change well.

I must say, I don’t take this job switch lightly, and a few people very close to me have expressed guilt in thinking that they were, in some way, partly to blame for my looking to move on from my current situation. Here’s the thing. Yes, I do take their opinions seriously.  I also consider these folks to be very close to me and always have my best interests at heart. However, no one forced me to make the decision to uproot myself and move from a big northeastern city to a small town in Utah. That was my decision to make. And it’s not one that I regret. That’s because I think the decision to come here was one that I was meant to make. Every decision has moved me closer to where I am supposed to be, and who I am supposed to be, and what I am supposed to be in this world. I have faith in that being true.  It’s been a learning experience and those are not always easy and comfortable. Unfortunately, learning can sometimes be painful, in the moment, anyway.

I realized this town is too small for me, and it doesn’t have enough going on to keep me happy. The town I am moving to is not a huge city like Boston but it does have more amenities than where I am now, relying so much on the tourism industry. Not that I love what Walmart stands for, but it is a huge advantage to have a store like Walmart so that if something breaks past 6 p.m., I will know that there is a place where I can likely buy a replacement part. Or, if I need a prescription filled on a weekend sometime after 12 noon on a Saturday, I have a hope of getting it filled.  To me, small things like that give me a measure of comfort. It’s not that I want to be spending all of my time at the local Walmart, but the fact that I won’t have to drive for 75 miles to get there, gives me comfort.

I’ve also realized I need to have some body of water near me. Back in Boston, my building had a beautiful reservoir out back. Even if I wasn’t going for a run around it, it was there if I wanted to just sit and “be.” To be able to sit and listen to the lap of waves on the shore is a huge comfort to me, even if I can see land on the other side. (In fact, I think seeing land on the other side actually makes me feel more comforted than sitting by the ocean and realizing the closest land mass is thousands of miles away.)

However, I feel guilt when I think of the fact that now the people with whom I work at the sanctuary have to look again for another staff member, leaving them short staffed again. And I also feel guilt when I think of leaving the amazing animals at the sanctuary behind. I know they are extremely well cared for, but caring for animals is what made me move 2600 miles. It’s what made me take such a huge cut in salary. I can’t ever give up on animals.

I really, really thought that when I made this big move, that this was IT. I really did. So, yes, I’m disappointed. But I’ve also made a very good friend or two over the past six months, and these are people I really feel like I was meant to meet and have in my life. They’ve taught me a lot about the goodness in people, and for that I am thankful. Sometimes I hear about such wickedness and crap going on in the world and wonder what makes some people the way they are.

So, I’ve already contacted the animal shelter in the town where I will be, and I plan on volunteering there as much as possible once I’m settled in. I stopped in this past weekend and immediately several cats came right up to me for attention. I didn’t let myself go visit with the dogs as I didn’t want to get them all excited and then not be able to take them on walks. As it was, I wanted to take home so many of the cats!! It is a small shelter but it does incredible work with the resources it has.

So now I’m thinking…maybe this is the reason I moved to this part of the US. To help share the beauty of this part of the country with visitors through my job.  To have a living situation that will allow me to be able to make some headway on paying off my RV and my car (and yes, that pesky private student loan), while also providing some comfort to shelter animals that can really use it.

Anyway, enough of my rambling. I’m sorry that I worried a few of you who wrote to me after not hearing from me on here for so long. I just had to focus my energies on things like job searching and stuff at certain times, so the blog had to step aside for a bit. Thanks for reading, as always.