On Leaving Jobs

“I hate my job,” she said.

“So quit,” I said.

“People would think it’s ridiculous to leave a job in this economy,” she said.

“Um…you realize you’re talking to someone who does things other people think are ridiculous all the time, right?”

“Yeah,” she laughed.  “But if I quit, I’d lose my retirement benefits.  Maybe I’ll just put 10 years in so I at least get part of them.”

“How much longer is that?”

“Four more years.” She laughs.

Mind you this is an educated woman with many skills and a great social network.  She could do whatever she sets her mind to.  She has enough money socked away to live for at least a year.  And that’s not counting her retirement funds.  There are people with less that have done it.  She could do this.  So why doesn’t she?  Well, I can only speculate.  In my experience, it’s a little scary to leave a job without a new one on the horizon.  But now that I’ve done it so many times, I have faith that it will all work out.  Because it always does.


“And you’re doing all this alone?” he asked.

“Yes,” I said.  As of yet, I hadn’t met anyone else who wanted to spend six weeks walking across northern Spain.

“That’s a little scary,” he said.

“Not really,” I responded.  But I was talking to a man who had a daughter in college.  Most men with daughters get a little nervous when they hear about my plan to walk the Camino. My dad is probably nervous too, but is now well experienced at living through my wild ideas.

“Do you know if you go through Burgos?” he asked.  I confessed that I had no idea what towns I’d be walking through.  My only research so far had been to read every book I could find written by someone who had walked the Camino, but I had yet to really get down the details of the trip.  He talked with great enthusiasm about the town and the festival he and his wife attended while there.

“Did you go there specifically for that festival?” I asked.

“No, actually,” he said as his eyes sparkled and a smile spread across his face. With a laugh he explained that they had once hosted an exchange student from there and went to visit her.

“That’s the way to see a place – though the locals,” I said.  He agreed.

So this morning I did a little research.  And, in what I can only call another sign that I’m on the right path, found that Burgos is indeed on my route.

All levels welcome

The class is called “Building a Garden Shed.”  I don’t have a garden.  Nor any property on which to put a garden.  In fact, I’ll be living “on the road” for the next year, so it’s inconceivable that I will need to know how to build a garden shed anytime in the near future.  Despite all of this, it is one class I’ll definitely be taking during my four months at the John C. Campbell Folk School.

Why?  Well, because I still have it in the back of my mind that I may one day want to live in a Tumbleweed Tiny House.  And I may just want to build it myself (well, with help of course).  There is just one small hurdle here: I have zero home building skills.  You might think building a garden shed is quite different from building a tiny house.  In which case I ask if you’ve seen a Tumbleweed?

My class covers use of hand and power tools (the only power tool I’ve every used is an electric screw driver thing), framing, trusses (I think those are the things that hold the roof up?), shelf building (I imagine this could be useful even if I never build a house), and window and door installation (because just about any house I live in will have windows and doors….though now that I think about it, maybe not…)  And when it’s all done, we’ve built a garden shed for the Folk School to use for years to come:)

Building anything is so out of my element that I just love the idea.  I mean, how else would I learn all these things?  You might think JCCFS would want only experienced builders on such a project.  And you would be mistaken.  Because one of the things I love most about JCCFS is that so many of the class descriptions, including this one,  end with the words “All levels welcome.”