Decision Made

Well, I did it. I sent the email declining the job offer. Before anyone tells me I just lost an incredible opportunity, let me first be clear about a few things:

1. I’ve learned throughout this process that I need to stop taking to heart how others feel when what I really need to be doing is listening more intently to my own beat.

2. It’s really fucking expensive to move to another country, and until you know my finances intimately, you don’t really know. You know?

I don’t mean to sound rude, but it’s really, really hard to make such a huge decision when left and right you’re told that money doesn’t matter, or that you’re wussing out because you don’t want to be going down the road to bankruptcy town. All of my young adult years I went about my business as if money didn’t matter and it led to serious problems. I cannot continue down that path.

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Decisions-Not My Forte

Happy Friday Eve, beautiful people.

This past Monday I was offered a teaching position at a school in Surrey. Surrey in freaking ENGLAND.

I can’t even put into words how I felt, but I can say, it was a mix of insane excitement and utter fear.

The rest of this week I have been a mess of decision-making-crazy.

Most of you are probably wondering what decision I even have to make. HELLO? ENGLAND?

Well, after several email correspondences, I have been given my final salary offer, and well…

I am disappointed to say the least.

I had wrongly assumed that the cost of living would be pretty relative to here in the U.S. and that is just plain not the case. The cost of flats in Southern England is astronomical. I mean, twice the cost of apartments in my area. For me, paying half of the rent, the costs I am looking at are more than three times what I am currently paying.

This wouldn’t be too horrible except for the fact that I will be taking a $3000 pay cut. What is absolutely insane is that the salary they offered me was incredibly generous and a HUGE step up from what I am currently making, but with the high tax amount taken out, I will be paid significantly less.

I don’t even know what to say.

I will have to some more crunching of numbers, but so far, it isn’t looking good.

Because I am someone who thinks with their heart and far too often I am idealistic in how I view the world, I had assumed that I could move to a different country, do the same work I do here, and it would work swimmingly. Well, that is not the real world. Not even close.

Not only am I a heart-thinker, I am also one who has a lot of debt and minimal savings.

Just to get my fat ass and my few possessions across the pond it will cost a fortune. And I am a broke as a joke teacher.

It isn’t over yet, I may be able to figure something out (like, maybe I can sell a kidney).

So, now I ask you all, what would you do? Would you go into further debt to move to another country? Would you be OK with being seriously broke just to experience another culture? Would you live well under your normal comfort zone in order to experience a serious adventure?

I need opinions and maybe some moral support. Something. Anything.

 

 

 

Heart Palpitations

All I want to do is eat. Eat.all.the.things. I want cake, cookies, salty chips, whole avocados. This is how I get when I am stressed, excited, nervous, feeling in limbo, feeling settled… Basically, all the time. However, the need to eat my feelings is therapy-edition-bad  when I have big decisions to make.

I am a horrible decision maker.

In that, I will avoid making major life decisions at all costs. Most days, I hope life will just happen and I won’t have to make any rash/huge/scary decisions myself.

The most inane, ridiculous aspect of this is that currently I am stressing about making a decision I don’t even have to make right now. I am stressing about stressing about a scenario that has not even happened.

What the?

As most of you know, I am attempting to make the big move to England (just writing that makes my eye twitch and heart palpitate). I had an interview last Wednesday with a school in Oxford. It was so cool. I would say it went well, and I learned a lot about the school, the school system in England, and that “fab” is my new favorite expression.

They expressed their disappointment that they wouldn’t be able to see me teach. I offered to send a video ASAP. They were thrilled. Then, I was down for the count with bronchitis for 4 days. This is how my life usually responds to time-sensitive things.

The woman I have been communicating with has been super nice and understanding, and insisted it was not a rush. So, after a depressing three days of missed work and a weekend, I came back to work, found a video on my school iPad I had already done, and sent it off.

I look hideous in this video, and it could be debated that I am about 6 months along due to the wonderful angle it was taken in. I mean, I am not even lying. The still of the beginning of the video makes me look like Sloth after a stroke. I am not kidding. So, I sincerely hope they disregard my RCF (resting crazy face) and just concentrate on the excellent teaching (if I do say so myself).

So, the point of my post is that I am stressing about a job I have yet to attain.

I was actually stressing about whether or not I should sell my Keurig, or not. I actually looked up shipping costs to ship a Keurig.

What the actual hell?

I don’t even have a job offer, but I am already homesick and sweating over the cost of public transportation.

What the fuck?

For real though, if this happens, it will be huge. Scary, exciting, expensive, and life-altering. Despite the exciting aspect of this, anything that is this huge of a change is terrifying.

I am also quite surprised by how expensive it is over there. I read somewhere that the cost of living is something like 33% higher in the U.K. than in the U.S. Yikes. There is a very real possibility I won’t even be able to afford this.

So, nothing other than stress to report.

 

 

 

 

Keen-An Update and a Request

Hello, fabulous blog buddies. I have a Skype interview with a school in England. The email I received said they were, “very keen” to interview me. This just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. I love the word ‘keen’ and seeing that, very British, word just reminds me of why I am working on moving there. GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH.

OK, I am better now.

Now, for the update…Go Fund Me will match my donations up to $100 for Teacher Appreciation week. The catch is that I have to have at least $100 donated by five different donors before May 13th.

If you all could share my post or just get the word out about what I am trying to accomplish, I would be very grateful. I hate asking for money (and I am still questioning my decision to even continue pushing my agenda), but this is a great opportunity that I can’t not at least try to participate in. Many, many thanks.

Here is my link:

U.K. or Bust

U.K. or (Literally) Bust

Loch Ness

Friends, I hardly ever ask for help. OK, that is a boldfaced lie. I ask for it all the time in the form of comments over at Shopper Lottie. However, this is different. For some time (like, 10 years), I have wanted to move abroad (get in line, sister). I have always had a crazy love affair with the U.K. and since visiting way back in 2010, I have never been able to forget about my one, true love.

For those who don’t know, I am at teacher in the U.S. I teach 3rd grade. I would love to be able to do something similar somewhere, anywhere in the U.K. I have friends in Scotland, so that would probably be preferable. I have heard that the education system is really very different when comparing England with Scotland, so one may be possible and the other out of my reach. I really don’t know.

I have contacted a couple of agencies, but the wait to hear a response is making me certifiably insane. I am not even sure they are legit or the correct way to go about this. HELP.

Long story short, can someone familiar with these parts give me any information they have that could help me in my endeavor? Even better, does anyone have connections that would better enable me to have even the slightest chance to attempt to live one of my dreams?

My loving thanks in advance.

Hump Day Ha-Ha’s and Little People

I have taken everyone’s suggestions into consideration for when the best time to post is. It was pretty split between evening and morning. Someone made a very good point that depending on where you are in the world, it could be afternoon/evening OR it could be morning/early. Thus, posting late or early in the day is a good idea, because either way, you are catching someone during their preferred reading time. Only a few people said they read off and on all day. So, in order to “catch” the majority of my readers, I have decided to post in the morning on Wednesdays. One of my friends had the great idea to post on Wednesday as a you-can-make-it-you’re-almost-there-have-a-laugh-boost! So, here we are!

I am a tad overwhelmed with my first 7-week masters class. The required reading makes me wonder what the fuck I was thinking. So, I am being lazy and posting a blog post from my old site, that I wrote years ago about my first time seeing a dwarf. Yes, you read that correctly. I did revise it, so there.

Before you read, know that this is satire, humor. I, in no way, feel our smaller counterparts are less. In fact, people of short stature are fascinating and wonderful people. Did I ingratiate myself properly? Now, onto the fun.

midget

Image courtesy of http://www.flickr.com

There are thousands of firsts in our lives-first kisses, first paychecks, first rolls in the hay, first midgets…oh… yes.

*Midget is not the politically correct term, so I have edited any further “midgets” to be more respectful.

I had my first little person experience this past summer in all places: Nottingham, England. Before this monumental first, I had never seen a dwarf in the flesh. Sure, I had seen them on TV, in magazines, in porn (don’t even act like you have never seen dwarf porn), but never right before my very eyes.

I am surprised I even saw her. I was standing in line to get a room at a motel and my leg suddenly had a crazy itch. I bent down to scratch and there she was, clad in wranglers and a cowboy hat. I had to pinch myself to make sure I was not in a crazy dream, or in Texas, or something. The luck in finding not only a little person, but one clad in western gear, in ENGLAND!

I was quietly amused, and as I mentally checked off ‘dwarf in funny clothes’, another thought struck me cold. See, I find humor in pretty much anything, but I am not extremely obvious about it, especially if it has the potential to offend or hurt someone’s feelings. But, my friend, the one who was currently, most likely, on his way into the motel lobby, was not so, shall we say, sedate about the things he finds amusing. I made a pact with God that if He somehow locked my friend in the car until I got a room, and the little person was safely out of sight, I would never again laugh at the vertically challenged.

God must have been busy that day, because between fervent promises and prayers, a voice whispered in my ear, “It’s a MIDGET!”

That was all it took for me to lose my I-didn’t-even-notice-you-standing-there-no-I-was-not-staring-cool. I responded with the most forceful whisper I could muster, “Shut up, go back to the car!” His response, “Look at her little wranglers!”

At this point, I could no longer keep the rolling laughter that had been building momentum in any longer. The attempt to keep a straight face looked like the combination of an almost sneeze face and a seizure.  People were starting to stare at us.

We bolted before we made total and complete, utter asses of ourselves. In hysterics, we decided the best option was to hide behind the car, because getting in the car and driving off would have been too easy.

So, there we were, crouched behind our rental car, literally rolling on the ground with laughter. It was the kind of laughter that you try to hide and stop, because it is mildly wrong and inappropriate in the given situation, but that exact thing makes it even more hilarious. It was the kind of laughter that makes you cry and gag a little, because you can’t get enough air and you forget to swallow.  I have never laughed so hard in my life. Between gags and wild laughter, I somehow made out a string of remarks, pleading requests, and queries, “Stop, I am going to pee! She is going to look out the window, and since she is a dwarf in a cowboy hat, she will know why we are laughing! Stop making that face! Don’t look at me, I can’t stop! I wonder what size hat that is?!”

It was awful, awful in a knowing-you-shouldn’t-laugh-at-others-but-you-can’t-help-it-because-it-was-a-little-person-in-toddler-sized-wranglers way.

It was inevitable that someone would take notice of the two spastic imbeciles laughing like hyenas on crack. “Are you two OK? Are you on the drugs?” a little old lady asked as she headed toward the car parked next to ours. That was our cue to move on from the Welcome Break.

Knowing how I usually react to anything of surprise (pointing and loud “whoa’s”), I am quite pleased with how I reacted to my first dwarf sighting.  And to be fair, she WAS wearing western gear. I mean, come on. It is undeniable that if it were not for my friend, I would have never had a laughing fit behind a car in the middle of England, we would not have had to drive on for another hour looking for another cheap motel, and I would not have peed in my last clean pair of pants. BUT, I can honestly and with fond memory, say my first little person was an unforgettable one.

My Future Life

One of my all-time favorite bloggers, babysteps22 nominated me for the Future Challenge. I feel I must take a moment to profess my adoration for this fabulous fellow woman and writer. She was the first person I connected with on WordPress. I instantly fell in love with her wit and spunk. I saw a little of myself in her words, and I was intrigued by the stories of her life in India. When I realized how effortless it was to connect and relate to someone from a different country and culture, I knew my decision to blog and network with other writers from all over the world was the right one. I feel honored to be able to write from my heart, and that expression of who I am is felt in someone else, thousands of miles away. Really, honored is putting it mildly. Thank you, beautiful human, for being the catalyst and my inspiration to write and touch so many lives. Also, sorry it took me so long to complete this challenge *sheepishly, shamefully hoping for your forgiveness*

So, now that I’ve been thoroughly creepy and sickly sweet, I will move on to the actual challenge. 

The rules: 

Thank the blogger who nominated you. I think I over-thanked *check*. Next, link back to the original creator of the challenge, Dreams and Movie Screens, so they can see how far their challenge has spread *check*. 

Then, share 5 things about your future, because obviously you’re a fortune-teller. Actually, in all seriousness, it’s like a dream board. The concept is, anyway. It’s pretty much a known fact that if you write down your goals, you’re like 90% more likely to accomplish them (or something like that). 

Finally, nominate 5 bloggers to share their own future. My nominees are:

  1. Cat in the Cactus
  2. Carrots in My Carryon
  3. A Funny Thing Happened When I Was Learning Myself
  4. Island Smile
  5. Spiked Cupcake

I guess it’s now time to Windex my crystal ball, it gets pretty smudged with all the peering into the future that I do. I swear, I spend more time looking into the future than I do living in the present. It’s a problem, I know.

Also, I’ll have you all know, I’ve had to knock on my coffee table, end table, entry table, and every kitchen cabinet because OCD. One does not simply tell their own future without superstitions rearing their ugly heads. So, with that I’ll jinx it all and tell my future: 

  1. I will finally have a damn dog. At the ripe-old-age of 32, I’ve never had to care for more than a ficus (and I promptly killed it). I know I’m ready to keep something other than myself alive. It’s time.  
  2. I will break down and buy a new car. I’ve spent my entire driving life not having to pay an expensive car payment each month. I also drive a car that has no emergency brake, has a cardboard sun visor, a broken, disintegrating seat, and has to go through major repairs just to pass smog each year. It’s more than time I finally drive a car that doesn’t have parts falling off it as it speeds down the freeway. For everyone’s safety. 
  3. I’ll be living in England. Somewhere lush, green, and homely. I’ll be so engrained in the British culture, I’ll be wearing wool sweaters, which I’ll properly refer to as jumpers, in July. I’ll not be able to go a day without my afternoon cuppa, and I’ll go on holiday to Italy, like it’s no big deal. I can already see myself walking along an old cobblestoned street in the drizzling rain, wearing plaid wellies. 
  4. I will be a published writer. Maybe I’ll write a lighthearted, fictional chick lit story about a lovable heroine, or maybe my big break will come in the form of a gritty, controversial autobiography that shocks my loved ones and friends. It’s a crapshoot. 
  5. I’ll finally be able to wear those expensive size 12 jeans that are collecting dust in the back of my closet. They’re circa 2009, and they have rinestones on the ass, in the shape of a fleur de lis, but they will fit like a second skin without leaving permanent indentations in my gut. A girl can dream. 

So, what do you see in your future? Play along, so I’m not the only one who has horribly jinxed myself. It won’t feel quite so lonely if I’m not the only one who actually ends up being the crazy cat lady whose only trip to real life is my weekly cat food and Popov vodka run. Please play. Please.