Sunday, May 23, 2010

plans

What can I say? Life has been pretty ordinary lately. It`s a relief, really.

Zack and I went on a shopping adventure in Chino yesterday. We were mainly looking for a good place to get my hair cut. We found a place that would cut it for only 2100¥ (about $21). I thought it would look a lot crazier and different than the style that I usually give myself, but it`s pretty similar. I feel much better; I was starting to revert to my thick curtain hair from high school.

While on our adventure--during which we discovered a Subway--we both kind of decided that we would only do this year and maybe one more. That`s it. Japan is wonderful, but that`s the problem. It`s such an easy place to live. The pay is pretty decent, even with the high cost of living, and the people are nice. Being an ALT is really easy and fun (usually). It`s easy to get caught in what I`ll call the teaching trap. We`ve met several people who have lived here for five years without realizing it. It`s just that comfortable. While I like the idea of a steady job that isn`t totally mind numbing, I have other plans. This is a good place for people who don`t really have a direction yet. Living abroad gives you time to think about your options while doing something adventurous.

I have ambitions, and I plan to pursue them. I am going to grad school before I`m 30. It`s something that I`ve always wanted to do. So, now that we have this timeline (leave Japan in 2012), I can start working.

Our other tentative plan is to travel as much as we can while we`re on this side of the globe. Plane tickets to Europe and Asia are way cheaper on this hemisphere. We`re going to take advantage of that fact as much as we can without totally going bankrupt. I`ve got student loans to worry about, but other than that, we are untethered. No mortgage, no car payments, no credit card payments looming. It`s a nice feeling, even if the thought of paying back all the interest on my loans makes me want to vomit. One of the best things that Zack ever taught me is that time does not equal money. Time and experiences are worth so much more than a piece of paper will ever be.

It`s starting to be more summer-like, which means humid and rainy. The rainy part sucks, but I`d take it over Georgia heat any day. I just need to get some rain boots. Summer also means that more fun stuff is coming up--a concert in the woods, firefly adventures, cabin parties, and hopefully, a trip to another country during our summer break. I can`t say with certainty what will happen today or tomorrow or next year, but it feels so good to think about the possibilities.

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