Well, it’s official! I start my new job in San Pedro on May 9th, so I’ve got exactly 35 days to get my shit together. My last day at work here will be May 7th, which is my 10th anniversary as a contract employee for the US government. While I chose my last day with that in mind, there have been lots of other little signs that have pointed to this being the right decision. The first came the day after I accepted the job, when we got this email from the Center Director:
You may have heard through the media or other sources that NOAA implemented an agency wide hiring freeze effective March 27, 2013.
So I was 100% correct not to trust them when they said they would get my application through as soon as possible. We’ve already got one of our bedrooms rented through October, and if we can keep the other occupied we should be able to afford a nice one bedroom for me with a futon/couch for guests. Simon will continue to work here full time through July, then will probably go part time so he can split his time between the US and Belize.
Thus far the worst parts have been 1) my boss, who fought for me to stay until the bitter end, and whose job will suck that much more when I leave and 2) taking my cat Squirt to my mom’s house. I miss him curling up in my lap on the couch in the evenings, sitting on the bar stool when I make dinner, running into the kitchen any time an ice cube hits the ground, and coming in to meow at me when I sneeze. We plan to bring Mia with us, but moving two cats to another country to live in a small apartment would just be too much. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself. Simon has no regrets.
Other than that, I’m pretty excited! My contract title will be a “Learned Professional,” which is pretty freaking cool, though my official title is Technical Coordinator for the Gulf and Caribbean Sharks and Rays Program. My first week there, we will head out to Lighthouse Atoll (where the Blue Hole is) to conduct a longline survey for sharks, and do some diver transects for turtles and rays. We’ll be camping on the beach, and I’ll even be able to leave in time to make my cousin Brooke’s wedding!
Now to figure out what to sell/pack/store. This is going to be a busy month.