A year ago, I was experiencing the joys of a relaxing day at the Blue Lagoon, outside Reykjavik, Iceland. I had a silica mask, then an algae mask regime, as I soaked in warm waters heated naturally by geothermal energy. I was wrapping up two months of travel throughout 10 countries in Europe, and really living my life to its very fullest. I was experiencing nature in all its glory, sans work, as I was on a much-needed sabbatical. Those were the days.
Fast forward to today, and no, I’m not anywhere glorious like Iceland. I’m not inside the magma chamber of a dormant volcano, repelling against the rocks, and modelling a hard hat. I’m not hiking to the top of and behind seemingly unreal, yet still very real, waterfalls. I’m not treading upon a quickly-melting glacier in a much too thin jacket.
I am in a new city (for me), in a new condo, with a new kitty, and a new job, though. I didn’t realize so much had changed from a year ago until I typed that, and reread it. Seattle has been a great move for me, but it’s just everyday life now. My condo is a work in progress, but it’s in a state where I’m able to live comfortably and happily every day. My kitty cat sleeps with me most nights, and while he isn’t the best at grooming, and sometimes just wants to play with all the toys at once when all I want to do is veg and burrito myself on the couch, he’s wonderful. I love that little fucker so much.
My new job is lovely. I love going to work. There used to be days when I wouldn’t leave my apartment for days at a time, except to go to the gym or get food. Once, I didn’t bother going into the office for 3 whole weeks. It’s not like anyone missed me. I just worked from home. The stress of living and working in San Francisco was too much for a post-Australia me. Seattle is just right. It’s had some foggy days of late here, and it feels like San Francisco, but without all the shit that made it awful.
My coworkers are smart, funny people, and I enjoy being part of a great team. I’m finally feeling more comfortable in my role, now that I’ve been here for nearly 5 months. The hardest part of my role, which I was specifically hired to oversee, the audits, finalized yesterday for the last few funds for the 2015 reporting year. There were some definite table-flipping, chair-throwing moments of intense stress, but I survived and handled those moments with as much grace as I could muster.
There’s still a matter of other business duties that goes along with operating hedge funds, like capital calls, distributions, annual investor statements, performance releases, management fees, month-end and quarter-end responsibilities, other review functions, and a slew of other lesser issues popping up. It’s all manageable, though. And interesting, since I didn’t really ever get to see this side of things, being in the auditor role for the last 12 years of my career.
I haven’t had much of a desire to travel, after depleting my savings to make a down payment on said condo. I feel good about my decision to purchase a home when I did though, as that meant selling out of all my long positions in the stock market before this Brexit market nonsense happened. And before the Seattle housing market begins to cool. I would say I’ve definitely enjoyed some appreciation on my home, just for taking the plunge on a purchase sooner rather than later. Crazy what a difference a few months can make. I’ve nested at home as well, not wanting to take any long trips or be away from Cheddar for an extended period of time. I didn’t have the money anyway, as I was furnishing a home three times the size of my place in San Francisco. I’m currently paying off those credit cards, and once I’m back at flat ground again, financially, I think I’d like to start looking into another international trip. It may not be two months long, but I’d like it to be longer than a week, with a couple destinations included.
I find myself getting that old familiar travel bug again: the desire to see new places, experience new things, gain new perspective, and push the limits of my comfort zone. I’ve built a strong comfort zone in my new home, and soon it will be time to leave it again.
Until then, though, this will be my spirit animal, resting in its comfort zone: