Monday, May 30, 2011

When I look for job offers, I try to also learn about the place and imagine myself living there. I know that in the end I will probably take the first offer I get, as it's pretty dry... but it's fun to think about it and I think it helps with the anxiety a bit.
I always look for the same things: proximity to the city's center/downtown, craigslist apartment rental prices, to check if I can survive there without a car. I sometimes check the forums on, to get a better feel for the place. I feel like I am learning a lot about America in that way!

I thought that I would write down some interesting things I found out.

Atlanta, GA - great gay community (esp. if I scored the job in gay synagogue), good weather for riding a scooter, walkability livable. Good prices for rental.

Bridgeport, CT -  the town itself kind of strange, a lot of areas that are not safe. Very high rental compared to the salaries and general likability of the town. A lot of the apts didn't look great. bad public transport, so a bit difficult with no car.

Spokane, WA - I think best option - it scored "walker's paradise", the apts are cheap, and the salary is higher than I have now. It's probably quite cold and rainy... but not too bad.

Portland, ME - beautiful area, great for hikes. Long winters with so-so public transport. But the city is pretty small and seems like it would be pretty easy to walk to a lot of places. Rentals not scary, but nothing special.

Las Vegas, NV - desert, in the middle of nowhere. I like desert, but living there might be tough... good for a scooter though. In NW is actually walkable/reachable, with so-so public transport. But the apts are cheap and beautiful! Some half the price I pay now.

Washington, DC - well, it's DC :), great public transport, no need for a car. Apt prices are ridiculously high, and it might be that I woiuld have to either sell my kidney, rent a closet or live with a roommate to survive.

Bay Area, CA - a few different places really, but similar pros and cons. Beautiful, weather, gays, scooter-weather, but high prices for rentals and very far anywhere outside of the small area where I would live.

San Antonio, TX - hot, Texas, far from everywhere, very difficult to survive without a car. Could use a scooter, but still difficult even though the weather helps. The rentals weren't that bad, but nothing special.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

the limbo time of my life

It's been more than a month later, and I still have no job. It is very worrisome. there is only so much time I can wait before I should pack and go back to Poland. This is terrifying, as I have no idea what I would do, and am afraid that a year break would be the kill of my career as an educator in the US. I have to apply for a visa renewal like, now. It's all is really scary and my anxiety levels are through the roof. I upped my meds a bit to get it down a bit.

The best side of it all? The extremely positive feedback I've been getting from my students. It is just so uplifting and warming... I think I've been dealing pretty well with the situation and am a good role model. I try to look at the positives :)

I am really worry about my Mom... I am afraid I won't be able to go and visit my family again this year. It's been three years since I saw any of them... My little nephew is already a year old, and I haven't had a chance to see him yet. It is painful even for me, rather removed and introverted person.

I think I should write here more... I post often links to articles on my FB, but I miss the forum to say more what I think. I gotta spring back up from the dark period I am going through. I've killed half my plants because I simply didn't feel like watering them anymore... I have to throw them away, as now I can see their dried up carcasses around. All the energy I had I seemed to be spending at work to keep up the joyful face and approach my kids with the same energy and attitude as usual. They are not the ones who should be punished for the board's bad politics and decisions.

It's funny that I am not actually scared of the place I will end up in. I am totally fine with almost all the places I could theoretically work. Atlanta, Spokane, Portland (ME), Bridgeport, LA... Each different, but I know I will easily get used to living there. I am pretty easy with that... It's the not knowing that is so nerve-wrecking. I see positive sides of each position, each place... even the return to Poland. But I hate to be in the limbo. The in-between is the most scary to me.