My family left for Florida yesterday morning, and while I've hardly been alone in the past 48 hours, there is definitely a different feel to the unusually empty house. Why didn't I go to Florida with them? you ask. Especially since they took the car you usually drive, leaving you virtually stranded in New Jersey? I didn't go to Florida because my best friend and I are going to Vegas and LA. Glorious, glorious.
I've never been this far out west before, and I'm very excited about traveling to these new cities. Going to LA will be an especially interesting trip. We plan on doing mostly touristy things (I really would love to go to the Magic Castle, home of the Academy of Magical Arts, but apparently it's very exclusive and by invite only. So if anyone can get me hooked up with three invites.. ;) ), but LA may be my future home one day. LA and I are going for a test drive.
I feel like I think about next year all the time, which is especially weird because no matter how much I think about it now, no real decision will be made until this summer. I am pretty much split equally three ways about what to do when I move out of my parents' house this summer--
1. Stay in the area, get the nicest crappy studio apartment I can afford, and get a job that will be able to cover my rent, student loans, and car insurance paycheck by paycheck. Oh, and groceries. Or maybe I'll just alternate nights between my parents' house and my sister's.
2. Move back to Michigan. Cost of living is a little lower there, and most of my friends are still in the area. We'll see how the film industry weathers the winter.
3. Ditch all I've known and move some place new. New Mexico if I want to pursue a film job. Anywhere else if I decide I don't mind what my day job is.
Here's the break down -- Jersey offers some semblance of financial security. My current job loves me, and I might have another option to pursue. Michigan guarantees easily accessible friends. Most of my friends in Jersey live at least a half hour away. Stumbling block to a lot of my spontaneous social activity ideas. Option number three, the anywhere option, guarantees adventure, if only from the looming giant of my student loans as I settle into a new state with no friends and no job.
Financial security, friends, or adventure.
There's a greater plan that needs to be considered here. Unfortunately, I don't yet have that sort of lifetime concept for my life yet. If I want to be able to move to Europe, I should probably focus on financial security now in order to have adventures later. If I desperately need a change now, I can be a little riskier in my decision for next year even if it fetters me financial in the future. On the other hand, if I don't know what I want to do next year, how can I consider where I want to be in five years? Or ten? What about the people in my life? If I move back to Michigan, that will alter where I am in five years. So will picking up and moving to a place where I meet an entirely new set of friends. There can be one goal -- putting a priority of friendships -- with radically different outcomes.
What to do, what to do.
Sometimes I miss that time in college when you feel like you have the whole world waiting for your graduated entrance just as eagerly as you are. There was something different about those options. There was less ambiguity.
And then there are so many options. When you don't mind taking risks, you sometimes get confounded by lack of eliminated options.
Who knows though? This greatly anticipated trip to Vegas and LA may change everything. After all, my friends always said I would be the one to elope...