Friday night (the 23rd) I was feeling a little homesick and called a friend in Chicago (we used to work at Starbucks together). I used my best material to get him laughing, talking about only buying eggs in San Ramon when my neighbor’s chicken lays enough eggs, the locos trying to tell me about a dirty movie they saw at the internet station (earmuffs!), and seeing that damn dog in Lajitas that ate my birthday cake. After a good laugh, he asked me the question that has become popular lately….
“What are you going to do after Peace Corps?”
…a year ago, this question wasn’t a problem simply because I’d say that I still had 21 months left. Now that I had 9 months left, I am starting to get nervous about what will be coming next. My planned end of service date will be towards the end of November or early December. A year and a half ago, I was planning to travel through Central America. But December 2007? I think I want to go home for Christmas this year. Then I began to think about money…should I try to come home before Thanksgiving and apply for a seasonal job (read: retail) to make some spending money? I’ll have to live with my parents again, which won’t be bad, but will be strange in the beginning just because I won’t be able to…
-listen to music at deafening levels & have solo dance parties
-take 3 pm siestas without being asked why
-come home late without worrying about waking them up
-not feel guilty about living with them as I will be approaching 27
Another problem is that I don’t know if I want to travel after the holidays because of money. But at the same time, I don’t think I’m ready to deal with cold Chicago weather yet. Plus, many people have told me that this may be the only chance I have to travel with no ties so I should take advantage while I have the chance. They’re right. But traveling is like the carrot on the stick (or dark chocolate bar in my case)…always dangling in front of me but I can never grab it. There will always be more places to visit, more places to discover, more adventures to be had. I will never feel as though I’ve traveled enough. But is that necessarily a bad thing?
Later my friend told me that he’s planning on going to grad school in 2008 and has applied for a store manager position at Starbucks to fill the time and make good money until fall ’08. I said,
“Are you crazy?! We made a promise that we’d never work there again!”
“If you’re store manager, can I have a job when I come back?”