I Started Nothing


Chohutta Wilderness, Fanin County, GA.  January 2013

The last two weeks have not been the easiest.

I came to the realization while in Birmingham over Christmas, that a decision NOT to go back to Provincetown this season was in my best interest.   For lots of reasons.   Financially, I don’t want to get “behind the 8 ball,” as it were.  I’ve been really good the last several years managing my money and a big part of that has been eliminating and staying out of debt.   Doing that, and saving a shit-ton, enabled me to change things up two years ago.  One of my greatest fears is getting strapped down by debt and financial obligations.  It’s limiting on every level of what I want to do with my life.

Then there’s the back-biting and bitterness that’s so apparent in a small town.   Unlike Season 1, I saw more than I cared to this summer.   I may be eating a bit of crow, but the dew is off the lily and I did, indeed, see behind the curtain.   I’m not sure a one-street town and it’s attentive closeness is where I want to invest several years of my life.

And the lack of year-round opportunity (hell, even people year round would be nice) is a real problem.  One industry in a one-street town does not lend itself to copious opportunity.  I’m not cut out for the still quiet of the winter months and all it portends.

But the main reason was the worry about and decreased ability of my parents to look after themselves.   They’re fine this very moment, but I can see a time in the very near future that I’ll be needed in Birmingham to help downsize their home, go through and move their stuff, take them to doctor’s appointments, etc.   When I left for Ptown in 2011, the feeling was 5-7 years.   I’m thinking more like 2-3.   So, I made a tough call, to change gears and continue things here in Atlanta.

What’s been hard has been telling those on the Cape that mean so much to me:  Brad & Joel, Chef II, Devon, Robert.   And it’s been hard to tell people here that I’m “back for good.”  The perception of failure seems to be so easily achieved.   But I don’t consider it failure at all.  To be cliche’, it’s a journey, one I undertook and continue on my own choice.   For once in my life, the choices I’ve made in the past two years are mine and mine alone.   It’s daunting, troubling, anxiety-causing and stressful, but at the same time, the responsibility for myself is extremely freeing.

Now if I can just remember these words, especially around 3:30am, all will go well!   I need to enjoy the trees and embrace the big forest that’s out there.


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