I’m about to head off to a dear friend’s wedding in Scotland (yay!) and then Geneva to see my “twin” and, as such, am finding it extremely difficult to focus on work at the moment.
But it has gotten me thinking about why I do this job. This year, I’ve got the Scotland/Geneva trip, a road trip to Congo and Rwanda, a weekend in Nairobi to see the parents of an old friend, a ton of time in Kampala at a pretty nice hotel (conferences), a workshop in Thailand, I’m thinking about going to Bali or the Maldives after Thailand, I want to try and get to Italy (which I’ve been talking about for approximately 100 years) and on and on and on. And these things are all possible. In fact, they are encouraged by an R&R policy that forces you out on vacation every 3 months and the fact that everywhere is expensive from here, so might as well go places you wouldn’t go otherwise.
Now, recently, I found out about a job I’d have a pretty good shot at in a place that I’ve wanted to live in desperately for awhile now. It is a good job, appropriate responsibility levels and all that and it would let me have a normal life. I could have bookshelves and my own tea pot and English Muffins for breakfast every morning. I could take baths every night with a glass of wine and the radio news on. I could take the time to find a hobby and a personal life and see friends for more than four day stints. I could get fit and start a beauty regime that might stop people thinking I’m in my mid-30s when I’m in fact in my 20s. I could stop giving my mom heart-attacks.
And yet... I’m pretty sure I’m not going to apply. Because if I do it, while I’ll be making fair money, I won’t be making the kind of money that will allow for big international trips regularly. I won’t be spending half my life on single prop planes and helicopters. I won’t be jogging through tukuls and hearing drums at night. It is a proper contract position for three years, so I’ll be tied to one place for longer than I ever have in my life.
The issue isn’t so much this particular job as it is the conflict that it inspired in me. When I left South Africa I thought all I wanted was a normal life. And it isn’t like I’m so brilliantly happy in the field. Still, I find myself hesitating. I mean, what is better? Tea Pots and Bookshelves or Helis and Tukuls?