…So Then I Took A Month Off…

I have spent the past 4 weeks voluntarily “unemployed”.

I feel like I should back up from there because I haven’t updated in so long!  I spent my winter months in Miami.  After my walking boot was FINALLY removed, I began working

Afternoon Session

Afternoon Session

with Miami Kiteboarding again on December 1st (and left March 21st).  It was a great time!  The crew down there is fantastic (love to Brandon, Ayyoub, Dominic, Gio, Sergio, James, Heidi) and it was great to spend a longer amount of time there this year.

However, all good things come to an end…  A combination of a poor windy season, some amazing job offers from schools around the world and a big change of things in my personal life led to my leaving Miami Kiteboarding.  I took a position at a new school, in a new place (I will post more about that when I get there….for now…you are free to guess!).  Because of everything…I decided it was time to take time off, prepare to move, catch up with friends and just relax (despite the “beach life”, it is amazing to have true down time)!

Once I left Miami, I headed to Atlanta to stay with my friends Amanda, Justin and Zach.  It was surreal staying in a place for any length of time that wasn’t near the ocean.  For the past 2 1/2 years since I returned from China, I have lived by the water.  I stayed in Atlanta for about 2 1/2 weeks of the total 4.  It was …needed.  I can’t say that I did a lot of different things while I was there.  Every day, I went to the gym with Amanda.  I worked a little on the computer.  I spent quality time at the house with the three of them.  We ate good food, had good

 Night out

Night out

conversations, enjoyed one another’s company.  Now, what does stand out as particularly good is…  Easter on Fripp Island (sans any Easter Bunny chocolate because we ate it before we got there), a stop at a gas station that doubled as a petting zoo, spicy tuna rolls from the sushi restaurant down the street, watching the same episode of a TV show 2..3…4 times because we were all too ADD to properly watch it the first time, cold house and warm fireplace, the aquarium and World of Coca-Cola (tourism box checked), a night in Highlands with old friends, going to Jack’s (my old dog) nose work class and dinner with Marco and Maria(dear friends and Jack’s new family)….

Ronda, Spain

Ronda, Spain

In the middle of my Atlanta time, I took a trip to Spain (this trip will take a separate post, I will put that up soon hopefully).  I was there for 6 days and it was amazing-it is such a

beautiful country.  I loved it.  While I already have a strong desire to “see the world”, Spain made that desire grow even more!  All I could think is..there are so many beautiful places in the world, I want to see them all!  There is so much beauty in everything, even the simple things.  When you stay in one place, you forget to notice all of that.  You stop looking up at the clouds or noticing the blooms on the trees or any of the ordinary beauty around you or the people you see or the food you eat.  It all becomes common place.  When you travel (or even better, live in new places)..you have the opportunity to always drink in new things, taste life every day!

Tapas

Deliciousness

I also took a few days to visit Savannah.  This place has held a special position in my heart.  I truly loved living in Savannah-there was always something to do, something to see and it photo 4felt like home.  As much as China started to change my life, Savannah completed the process.  I had missed this city when I was away, but I didn’t know how much until I drove down the oak lined streets of downtown and walked through my old neighborhood.  Of all of the places I have been, I think of this place as my home.

I visited the Paddison family while there.  It was good to go back.  Like my time spent in Atlanta and Spain..it was simple.  I spent time at the house, played guitar hero with Mason, took Mason

Paella at Sage, downtown Savannah

Paella at Sage, downtown Savannah

out to Tybee for a lesson, went kiting with the old crew, went running with Jeanne (like old times before I was hurt), shopping and lunch, good dinners, crossfit, playing with the pack of dogs (all rescues, great mix!), played with baby chickens, cleaned the barn, went out one last time downtown with some amazing friends…just enjoyed each and every moment.

The past month has taught me a lot of things.  If you know me, you know that money is not something I place a high value on.  I prefer to learn new things, meet people, go places…live.  However, with the career path I have chosen, it is often stressful with money. It is a feast or famine situation.  After over 5 months in a cast at the end of the year and then a slow windy season in Miami, my bank account was not showing me a lot of love.  As a result, I tried to be conservative with my money and work as much as I can.  Understandably, the idea of then taking a month of was…scary to say the least.  A friend told me once that the money you spent today is not a loss.  You can always earn more money, the experience is what counts.  I think I really understood that this month.

I talk a lot about “enjoying the moment” and living life to its fullest.  This month has shown me that, although I do my best to live by that motto…I still fall short.  Every day I spent was special.  Every friend I interacted with…I was there in that moment.  I wasn’t thinking about what I had to do the next day or what happened the day before or what is going on at work, I was “present”.  I think that being “present” with people, with yourself is one of the hardest things to do.

Not everyone has the opportunity to do what I have done.  I am so lucky that I have friends that are like family-in Atlanta, Spain, Savannah…  People that take me in and really make me feel “at home”.
So, now my month is at an end.  In a few days, I will leave and make a fresh start in a new place.  It has all been a great ride and I look forward to my next adventure.
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