Saturday, March 24, 2012

Spring cleaning

So I've been off work for over a week now. Not having to go to work has opened some possibilities, like doing the spring cleaning. It wasn't planned this way, but there you have it. It has also been rather nice weather, so the windows could stay opened all day and everybody was fine with that. Its not like I have really been taking advantage of it, but that's besides the point.

The spring cleaning has been taking place on several levels, in different areas of my life. There is, of course, the cleaning of our dwelling, something that is being done, one little step at a time. If anything, we would like to get access to the office once again, and get the janitor to fix the dripping faucet in the bathroom. Sorry, more like pouring faucet. Its quite a bit beyond dripping at this point.

A prime reason for this break has been for me to get some head space to understand where I'm standing, what I want to do, what I give a crap about. I had already been debating what the future held for me at my current employer, and by now, I have pretty much made the decision to move on. Its no longer a matter of if, but when, but even more interestingly, its also a question of what.

When I returned to the workplace after my summer of fun, it was a pre-planned temporary thing, to get me back into the grove of working, get the change of residence taken care of, and then looking for more rewarding employment, better salary and perks, and the opportunity for advancement. When I took the customer service job at the bank, it was with the very idea that this would be a stepping stone, a temporary time in the trenches until I could move on. Between what was touted and what was delivered, my time in the trenches only got more tedious and difficult, hence my need to regroup.

Something that had been cropping up in my datavorous trawling of the web has been a great bit of interest in technology and computers, from net security to coding, the kind of thing that I has pretty much always considered being beyond my means in both skills and learning. I remember my days of high school in that computer class and how much of a noob I was, while some would advance well beyond wordperfect and lotus,  to DOS programming and playing Tetris in class. Yeah, I'm that old that I was in computer classes when Tetris was the new hot shit.

Since then I have moved on quite a bit, getting acquainted with computers and technology pretty much on my own, to the point that I am now looking at experimenting with programming with a hot new piece of tech and doing the sort of code juggling that total geeks do instead of going clubbing and stuff. And it feels... good. I get the feeling that this a field where what matters is what you can do, instead of what degrees you might have. After all, most job postings in the tech field lists what you need to know, and rarely what diplomas you hay have achieved, most likely because the field is continually evolving and if you are interested in it then you are certainly going to be continually reading up and playing around with it to at the very least keep up to date.

While this going on, the question of finances came into the game, especially that I'm not certain that I will be paid by the work insurance for my current time off, so planning ad to happen. The taxman letter only stroke the flames under that particular soup pot, forcing me to get those in order. Tax filing is one thing, but finalizing the insurance from my summer vacation is another beast that I've delayed needlessly, but that my doc seems to be interested in getting done, so it starts adding up.

Our bills obviously returned to haunt us, which led to looking for ways where we could be doing some savings; the only real channel for savings would be rent, which would involve moving out of this place. It is something that I had resisted considering for at least another year, if only to get our shit in order, but when opportunity rises, only the foolish ignores it, and you don't get to be a sorcerer by being foolish. My partner had been making (repeated) mentions of other dwellings, with cheaper rent, if only so the potential of going back to school could be logically and safely entertained. I had postponed that to later.

Until now. When we moved a couple of years ago, we had visited a few places and we came down to two locations: the one we picked was out "plan a," being the better place, nice, quiet, big, and definitely a move up from our old locations. We also had a "plan b," in case the first one didn't pan out, which was in need of more work and was felt to be a less desirable choice than what we went for. But being a location of choice for students, it also means that rentals there are always a possibility. New ownership seems to be the case, and some needed work was done in those places, which would make them very attractive, noticeably cheaper, closer to many conveniences like restaurants and our vets, and to easy access to downtown. Certainly worth considering in our circumstances.

The taxman's letter could have been interpreted as an assault, a problem standing in the way on my road to recovery. Instead, because I'm wired weird, I saw it as a challenge, an opportunity to get my shit in order.

Opportunity lies all around; its up to you to see it, identify it as such, and use it to your advantage. So get off the couch, its time to clean your house up for the new year!

Post scriptum: as I was finishing up the post, I checked my phone messages. It turns out that that the manager for the support position had called me and wanted to schedule a face-to-face interview. I guess that he wasn't aware that I was out on sick leave. I will schedule up a meeting with him and take it from there. I'm not banking on it paying off, but it helps solidify my standing until I move on. Gotta play the game...

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