The Captains 44 Days Off

Days Until I Am Married:  64

Current Weight:  171

So it’s a day shy of two months since I last posted a blog.  In my last blog I wrote a lot about not knowing what the future would hold.  I think I said something to the effect that I would let everyone know what my future plans were as soon as I found out.

Obviously I forgot to do that.  I don’t really know how to sum up two very busy months, so I guess I’ll just start at the beginning.  My job with Sarasota County ended on June 22nd, two weeks after my last blog.  At the time, I still had no idea what my next job would be.  Luckily by that point I had a couple of prospects.  I had three interviews lined up over the next two weeks.  One was for a private company called Government Service Group (GSG) based in Tallahassee, doing consulting work.  The second was for a City Manager position in Fort Meade, Florida.  The third was for an Assistant City Manager position in Crestwood, Missouri.

As it turned out, I had scheduled a weeklong trip to St. Louis to celebrate my first week of unemployment and I wound up interviewing with Crestwood while I was in town.  I ended up spending one alcohol drenched week in St. Louis the last week of June, and I had a blast.  At the last minute I decided to rent a white Mustang convertible for my trip, which ended up being a great idea.  Although I would never own a Mustang, it was quite fun driving one for a week.

The highlight of my week back I St. Louis was definitely catching the Phillies and the Cards at Busch Stadium.  I did way too many other things while in town to mention, but I ended up getting to spend some time with almost everyone I know in St. Louie.
After a week in Missourah, I flew back to Florida and drove to Tallahassee for my interview with GSG.  The interview went great, and afterward I returned back to Sarasota.

I had a fantastic 4th of July with my friends in Sarasota.  We packed four couples onto a boat and drove out to a sand-bar in the Gulf of Mexico.  We dropped anchor and chilled out in the middle of the Gulf for a good 4-6 hours.  It was truly gorgeous out that day and it felt like we were in the Caribbean.  Not bad for unemployment.

The first week in July ended with a phone interview for the City Manager of Fort Meade.  All in all, my first two weeks of unemployment were a blast.  Interview, travel, beach, fun and the best part was that I was still getting paid from my built up vacation time that I was paid out when I left Sarasota County.

After the first weekend in July, it really set in that I was unemployed.  Instead of freaking out, I made a conscious decision to treat the time I had off like vacation.  I put faith in my ability to secure a job, and decided to enjoy living by the beach for one more month.  I bummed around the beach, got caught up on sleep, and just enjoyed myself.  After about a week, I made the decision to accept a job with GSG in Tallahassee.  My biggest priority in looking for a job was allowing Megan to keep her job as well.  The company that Megan works for in Tampa has it’s headquarters in Tallahassee, so she was able to transfer offices without disrupting her job drastically.

Megan and I drove up to Tallahassee the second week of July to find a place to live.  We ended up renting a 3 bedroom house in Southwood, a planned community in the Tallahassee area.  Southwood was designed to encourage a sense of community in the neighborhood, and it really shows.  All of the houses were built with front porches and street-scaping.

Southwood also has a town center and several miles of walking and hiking trails.  It seemed to us like a great way to meet people in our area, and it is very close to where both of us work.  Megan’s work commute went from an hour fifteen each way down to five minutes each way!

After selecting a new home, we had a little over two weeks to finish up as much planning as possible for the wedding and pack up the house and move.  With a little bit of time left to enjoy my unemployment, I took a mini-trip to Miami.  I spent all day July 18th on a boat by myself in Miami.  It was amazing; the water in Miami is simply gorgeous!

After cruising the Downtown and South Beach for a couple of hours, I checked into my hotel and headed to Dolphins Stadium to catch the Cardinals playing the Marlins.  The next day I woke up and drove to Fort Myers to attend to some wedding business.  First, I took a boat out in Fort Myers to see the lay of the water near the resort where we are getting married.  Afterwards, I met Megan at the resort and we knocked out a bunch of wedding stuff, including a tasting of the reception food that was unbelievable.

Megan’s parents came down for a visit the third weekend of July and stayed with us.  We went out on a boat up in St. Petersburg with her family and had a great time until we got stuck in a rain storm.  Right after their visit, I got stricken with Potter-mania and I ended up reading Deathly Hallows in two days flat.  That gave me just under a week to pack the whole house up and get ready for the move.

I ended up doing almost the whole move by myself.  I rented a 35′ U-haul truck, hired a couple of guys to help me load it, put my car on a tow-trailer, and left the morning of July 31st for Tallahassee.  Driving in a vehicle with a max speed of 55 and no cd player sucked, but I motored through.  The five hour trip ended up taking seven, but that was quite a good time considering the circumstances.

Once I was finally in Tallahassee, I unhooked my car and then proceed to unload the whole truck by myself.  Considering this is by far the heaviest and largest amount of furniture I’ve ever moved, I managed to impress myself.  Unloading a double dresser with just a dolly and pigheaded determination is quite challenging indeed.

I was finished unloading by Wednesday the 1st, and spent the next several days unpacking.  Megan arrived from Tampa on Friday nite, and we spent the weekend getting the house in order.  We both started work on Monday, Megan at her new office and me at my new job.  So far I really love my new job.  I have my own office with a window!  I will explain what my new job entails in a future blog, but suffice to say that it is right up my alley and is great experience for my resume.

This brings me to today, new city, new job, new house, but the same old Captain.  I now live about an hour away from the Gulf, which isn’t ideal but I’m not complaining.  While there was a lot of amazing things that happened over the past two months, perhaps the most amazing thing is that my weight didn’t flux that much.  I didn’t exercise much due to my haphazard schedule, but I tried to eat right when possible and I managed to stay about the same weight.  Over the past couple of years, I’m usually either noticeably adding or subtracting pounds from month to month.  I actually managed to remain stable for about two months, which makes me happy.  With only two months till the wedding, I’m ready to put my exercise back into driver’s seat.

My 44 days off were a blast.  Much like my two years in Grad School and five years of college, I once again managed to make to make unemployment look easy, fun, and glamorous.  With that being said, I’m glad to be back working on my career.  Too much of a good thing never seems to work out.

Ciao,

The Captain

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