Since last April I haven’t posted a blog that wasn’t the weekly column I write for the Devils Lake Journal that appears in each Tuesday’s paper. With a new year upon us I decided it was time for an original post.
Those of you who regularly read my blog, especially those who have been with me from the get go, know how incredibly grateful I am to have found full-time employment in my field after such an extremely long period of under and unemployment! In addition, after discovering how much I loved blogging, it has been thrilling and given me so much professional and personal satisfaction to write a weekly newspaper column, and to have people tell me on a regular basis how much they enjoy it! Equally if not more satisfying as I live and work in Devils Lake is to see my family on such a regular basis, especially my Mom and Fast Eddie. I am enjoying every single minute of it!
The focus of my column is adjusting to life in my hometown, and though I have alluded to those adjustments in my column, I haven’t fully expressed just how difficult I’ve found it to be. Most of this adjustment isn’t due to the city of Devils Lake itself, although it doesn’t help that it’s located in such a frigid winter climate and that any sizeable big city, such as Minneapolis, is so far away. It turns out that I am just not cut out for living in a town of this size. I am sure part of that is the fact that I spent nearly 30 years living in big cities like Denver and D.C. It’s difficult for me to figure out exactly why I don’t like living in a small town, but I think it boils down to that for me there isn’t enough to do or see or have the option of doing or seeing. At the risk of offending small town inhabitants or sounding ungrateful, (however, what’s the point of writing a blog if you’re not going to be honest) I find living in a town this small stifling, a bit bleak and sometimes downright depressing, just as some of you would not like living in a big city, but maybe for different reasons.
I’ve also greatly missed the city of Denver itself, as well as Colorado, much, MUCH more than I ever thought I would. I lived in Denver longer than I lived in North Dakota and I consider it to be my home as much as I do ND. The number of things I miss there are too numerous to list.
I’ve been at the Journal nearly nine months now, shuffling back and forth the first six months or so between news and advertising (which was not my cup of tea!). Once I landed full time in news, I took a pretty big hit in pay and hours (37 1/2 hours per week, although some at the paper are only working 35 hours per week), which means it’s a struggle now to pay my bills or have much extra money for social activities, much less visiting CO or anwhere else for that matter. Even driving to Grand Forks, the nearest large city, is something I can’t do very often considering the cost of gas.
Although when my next birthday rolls around in February, I will be 52, I am not done with what I want to accomplish in my career and work life yet. Not even close. I am not sure what I want to do next or when I want to do it, although I have some thoughts, but I do know I want it to be in a larger town with more to offer. I would love to go back to Colorado, but a new adventure somewhere else could also be exciting!
Either way and all of the above being said, I am ever so grateful to God for this employment gift in 2012 and the even more important gift of time with my family.
I can’t wait to see what 2013 brings my way or what I bring to it! Cheers to you and yours!