I think this might be one of my favorite Friday Fives of all time.
Courtney, Mar and Cynthia have asked us to step into the Wayback Machine today and revisit our lives 10 years ago. Interestingly enough, I have been thinking about that a lot recently for a number of reasons.
As I’m sure is the case for many of you, my life was MUCH, MUCH, MUCH different than it is today. Going back a decade would put us in 2005…I was 27 years old and packed up my entire life to move from Baltimore to Ventura, California. I had no job lined up and no real plan of what I was going to do when I got out there. All I knew was that I needed a change.
10 Years Ago…
1) I WAS NOT A RUNNER, BUT I DID TAKE ON MY FIRST 5K
Shortly before my move I ran my first 5K, but that race had nothing to do with me personally. I HATED running. Instead there was something much bigger going on.
In late 2004 my stepmom, whom my father had been married to since right around the time I was 11, passed away from a brain tumor. She is the mother of my three brothers and as I’m sure you can imagine, my family was completely destroyed by her loss. I heard about the Race for Hope in Washington DC, whose beneficiary is the National Brain Tumor Society, and I knew I had to get involved.
Never mind the running hatred. It was something I had to do.
So I started a team and got quite a few friends on board. We raised several thousand dollars. It was my slowest 5K ever and yet the most important race I’ve ever done. I’m thinking I might want to run it again in 2016.
2) I was Driving a MINI Cooper Across the United States
Or rather my boyfriend at the time was doing a lot of the driving because said MINI Cooper was packed so full of stuff that driving made me nervous. During that 9 day/8night trip we stopped overnight in Pittsburgh, PA (hotel), Columbus, OH (friend’s house), Chicago, IL (hotel), Des Moines, IA (camped), Denver, CO (with family), Grand Junction, CO (camped), Bluff, UT (camped), Las Vegas, NV (hotel), and then on to LA and eventually my new, small, beach town home in Ventura County.
I have colorful stories for days about it; from killer crickets in Colorado, to a creepy steakhouse in the middle of Nowheresville, Utah, to questionable stains on the wall of our Vegas hotel room. It was a once in a lifetime experience despite the fact that my boyfriend and I broke up at least once a day throughout the trip, which speaks volumes for how our relationship would go after that point. But I digress…
3) I Had the Most Ridiculous Commute on the Planet
Naturally when I got out to California, I needed a job. I was lucky enough to find some freelance within the first couple weeks I was there. (For those of you that might not know, I’m a designer.) So that’s great right?
Kind of. The opportunity was very cool–designing movie posters for an agency in Sherman Oaks which is just outside of LA. The downside? That’s more than a 50 mile commute in either direction.
ONE HUNDRED PLUS MILES OF TOTAL COMMUTE PER DAY.
I not-so-happily dealt with this for more than a month while in my free time looking frantically for absolutely anything else closer to my house. The job itself was really awesome, the people were nice and I had a hand in some cool projects, but…ya know…one hundred mile commute.
Just before I found a job in Santa Barbara (a mere 20-ish miles away and hence WAY more manageable) that agency offered me a full time position that I politely declined. The week before it had taken me nearly 6 hours to get home because a wildfire in the area had shut down the 101 freeway. Let’s just
4) I Adopted this guy
At first I was often feeling pretty alone in my new surroundings and I had a little bit of trouble adapting to life on the west coast. I found Oskie all alone in a rescue–his brothers and sisters had already been adopted–and it was love at first sight. He moved in with me a week later and we’ve been together ever since. I know people say that dogs are man’s best friend, but this cat is mine.
He turns 10 in August. I can’t believe we’ve been together for so long.
5) And then the Human friends…
There are some seriously important individuals in my life right now that I never would have known had I not moved to the west coast. Living out there so far away from my family and friends back home definitely had its challenges, but I wouldn’t trade the experience or the wonderful people I met for the world.
Have you ever made a big move in your life?
I hope that everyone has a spectacular weekend and if you’re racing, GOOD LUCK! The Baltimore Women’s Classic is Sunday and I’m sad to be missing it!