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Archive for September, 2011

Richard Branson? What the heck? I promise, it’s relevant. Watch from about 1:00 to 2:10. 

It’s been two years since I left my job at the Alumni Association. It really doesn’t feel like that long ago. I still remember copier codes, inside jokes, meeting times and annual deadlines. It’s funny, some days I feel like I could walk in and pick up back up where I left off. But I know I’ve changed in big ways in the past two years that make it unlikely that I’ll ever go back to a 9-5 desk job.

I’m so happy for my cousin, Rachel, who recently made a change in her career. She left her job at a boutique PR firm in DC to go back to nannying, the job she’d had while she was in grad school. It’s a scary jump to make— to leave the track you’ve carved out for yourself and imagine something different. Rachel is one of the most kind and caring people you could ever hope to meet so it seems only natural that she’d spend her time taking care of other people. Her new schedule also gives her time to write and blog on the side, so she’s able to freelance and exercise her creative talents. You can check out samples of her writing on her blog.

Now, getting back to Richard Branson. I wanted to share that clip because I think he explains the idea of “job sharing” and the merits of working part time very well. I cannot speak highly enough about the peace and balance that a part-time work schedule has brought to my life. I feel like I am able to contribute to and interact with my community on a daily basis and also contribute an equal amount of time (if not more) to myself, Ryan, our health and home, and our friends and family. I’m aware that working part-time is not possible for everyone, and I would not be able to maintain my schedule without Ryan’s support, but I hope that as our generation continues to move further and higher into the ranks of the work force, we’ll continue to consider and adapt to alternative work schedules. 

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I don’t even know where to begin to try to explain the last few days. To put it succinctly, Ryan and I went out to Washington state for Labor Day weekend for the DMB shows at the Gorge Amphitheater. It sounds simple, but what ensued was another trip of epic comedic (if you want to look at it that way) proportions— flight delays, yurts— what the heck is a yurt?, getting kicked out of yurts, changing hotels in the middle of the night, getting locked out of our room at the Best Western, lots and lots of driving in our rental ‘stang, and flying home in a hurricane— no biggie. Nevertheless, there were some extremely high points that punctuated our otherwise ridiculous trip, which I will try to focus on in this post. For instance, when I woke up to this view on Friday morning, after 23 hours of traveling, it all seemed worth it.

It was the most inanely gorgeous, breathtaking view I’ve ever tried to wrap my head around. Unfortunately, in the foreground, you’ll notice a yurt. Please call me if you would like more elaboration on the “luxury” yurts that were our accommodations.

Our reward for being early risers (e.g. Ryan getting calls from the east coast at 6:30 in the morning) was that we were able to have a private breakfast on the terrace of the resort just as the sun had finished coming up.

I don’t have any pictures of the actual DMB shows— which were awesome, my personal favorite was Friday night— but you can see in this picture the back of the stage and how close it is to the actual gorge. It looks like it could practically fall in.

There is something special about this venue and the people that come to it— you have to be a little bit crazy. This is venue is hours from anything so all the people that attend have to camp. Yes, camp. The nearest hotel—the Best Western—is 40 minutes away and is occupied by artists and crew (thank god— I would not have made it through 3 days of camping).

When we did make it back to Seattle, for a night, we had a fantastic time. We found a terrific sushi place called Japonessa that serves the biggest rolls I have ever seen— truly, they serve them on platters. And the beauty of watching the sunset over Elliot Bay, again, made some of the craziness of the previous days recede in my mind a bit.

I’m really looking forward to Ryan getting back from Denver tonight so we can laugh and remember so many of the details that are already getting a bit blurry. It’s funny, though, it always seems that the trips that don’t go exactly as planned, like our honeymoon, you end up having the best memories from. I think we’ll be looking back on this trip very warmly for many years.

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