I left Knoxville late this morning and made the drive to Atlanta.
I think I like Atlanta more than Knoxville. First impression is better anyway. I got a little used to Knoxville by the time I left it, since I get oriented in new places pretty quickly, and getting that sense of where things are makes me feel settled a little, but I don't know. I like Knoxville, but I don't know if it's the place for me. When I went to New Orleans last year it took me 2 hours into the first day to fall in love with it and from there my love for the city just grew. That's what I want it to be like when I pick a place to live now. The cost of living in New Orleans is pretty high, but I think I'm going to look again and look for some jobs and see if I have any luck.
If I haven't figured out what to do or where to go by the end of my time in Tampa, I think I'm going to do a drive through the Deep South to get a look at some places there. And I'm going to look on my way down through Georgia because on the way through near the coast I liked it an awful lot. We'll see. I'm back to square one, I think.
I've been thinking, again, some more, like always. And I have myself more confused than ever before. I know what I would really like to do, but I don't know if I would really like to live on those wages, living month to month and not having room in my budget to make me feel safe and comfortable. I did that in college for 3 years and it's stressful and unpleasant. I think a job I really loved would make it worth it, but I don't know if a mediocre job would. If I'm working two jobs to make ends meet, I want one of those jobs to be the thing I really really want to do. Not cleaning kennels at a vet clinic. If I'm running my savings out, I want it to be for a really awesome internship. If I went to the Himalayas to save snow leopards all I'd want is shelter and food, I wouldn't care about anything else because I'd be doing the coolest thing in the world. But if I'm miserable at my job, I at least want to be able to go to the bookstore once a week without thinking about how it's going to mess up my finances for a whole month.
So I don't know where to go, what to do, what to settle on. I hate the idea of just barely coming out on top every month and I hate the idea of giving up the idea of what I want to do just to make a little more money. I don't know where the compromise is.
That's what I have to figure out. On top of the whole where-in-the-world-do-I-want-to-live thing.
So there's all of that. Tomorrow I think I might go to the aquarium. They have a whale shark!