What this Blog is about
09/24/2007 - 03/25/2009
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I have been a software engineer for twenty years. I have worked in the aerospace and defense, healthcare, dot bomb, and enterprise security industries. It seems every five years or so I flame out. (Note to possible future software engineering employers ... I just said that to make the blog interesting). (Note to everyone else ... previous note is total B.S. I flame out about every five years). Here’s an example. I worked for a really big security software company from 2003 to 2007. It was interesting, fun, challenging at first. We were developing a new product from the ground up. By the third year the job had become monotonous ... adding a new thingy here and there but I was pretty much doing the same stuff over and over. The work couldn’t hold my attention. My attention drifted to more important issues like ... why is this manager such pain in the ... ? ... why do I have to work on this crap again? Is it lunch time yet? Finally I gave notice and was out of there two weeks later. (Note to former employer: I found the work there to be scintillating and would welcome the opportunity for potential employment in the future. Gotta keep my options open, right?)
With my new found freedom I decided to do some soul searching to discover what I really wanted to do with my life. After ten minutes of soul searching I decided to clean the kitchen. I found a ton of stuff to do instead of soul searching. I upgraded my home entertainment system (Samsung 46” LCD TV, PS3 ... for the Blu-ray, not the games, Onkyo surround sound reciever, Apple TV). I bought an IPod and a digital camera. I got in touch with my long lost cousin in South Lake Tahoe ... which resulted in my buying a season pass to Heavenly. A week skiing, a week in San Francisco ... A week skiing ... you get the picture. Not much soul searching going on here, right? I told my Dad I was waiting for an epiphany. I’m sure he was impressed with my pro-active approach. As the ski season wound down my former manager asked if I’d be interested in coming back as a contractor. So after spending seven months trying to figure out what to do with my life I went back to the same company, same job ... but as a contractor. Progress? Not hardly.
My contract job ended (abruptly) in November 2008 when the economy was tanking. All contractors were let go. Now what? I bought another season pass at Heavenly of course. A week in San Francisco, a week in Tahoe. The whole pattern repeated itself. My former manager indicated there might be contractor money available again. My rate would be reduced by quite a bit. This time I declined.
This is about the time I started to freak out. I had to make money didn’t I? More importantly I had to do something ... anything. I needed a good project. I thought about what I really liked doing and wanted to do right now. Travel was at the top of the list. I have done a decent amount of traveling over the years and I love it. I started searching for ways to travel and still be able to support myself. I considered joining the Peace Corps ... I am still considering it ... but finally landed on teaching English overseas. Cool. I had my project. I was finally interested in something again.
This blog will document how I got my ESL career started (or failed to get my ESL career started) and all the travel experiences I had along the way. I have no idea how it’s going to play out. Maybe I’ll have a new career. Maybe I’ll be back at my old company in a few months. Let’s see what happens.