bluealoe: (BlueAloe)
[personal profile] bluealoe
It's been an interesting summer.

After graduation, I settled in for a long job search. All my professors said it would take time to get a job, and to be patient. I had my routine down; which job boards to check daily, my templates for cover letters, a spreadsheet to keep track of where I applied...then I got a job.

I was shocked. No one gets a job after their first interview. But apparently I did? The University of Alaska Museum, in Fairbanks, offered me a position in the Education department. I really had to think long and hard about whether to accept the offer...on one hand, it's a great museum, I actually volunteered there for awhile back in 2008, the position sounded perfect for me, it's the town I grew up in and know well. But on the other hand, I wasn't sure I wanted to move back to Fairbanks, and the logistics of moving all the way across the country are not the easiest. Plus I didn't want to take the job just because it was the first offer I got. And obviously Rory had a big say in the decision, too. I wasn't going to do it unless he wanted to. And after several days of long discussions and considering ever angle, we decided to say yes.

The next month was an utter whirlwind. Finding a place to live, packing everything, arranging to get our stuff shipped to Alaska, figuring out how WE were going to get there, seeing all our friends before we left, plus some major drama with my in-laws (let's just say they didn't take the news well). Oh, and going to a family reunion in South Dakota in the middle of all that. But at the end of July, we left New York and started driving to Alaska.

It took us eight days and over 4,600 miles. With Rory, my mom (who volunteered to drive with us), two cats, and me, all in two cars. It was definitely an experience. I'm glad we did it, but I never want to repeat it. Especially with the cats...they behaved remarkably well, but it was hard on them.

We got to Fairbanks on August 3, and it's been surreal. I still can't believe I'm back in the town I grew up in. We're actually living only a few blocks from my old high school. Everything looks the same, and parts of it are very comforting, but it's different too. And I'M different. There's so many memories here, both good and bad, and I'm still struggling to sort it all out. It just doesn't feel real.

I started work last Wednesday, and so far the job is good. I've mostly been filling out paperwork, doing online trainings (including a certification in how to use a hot glue gun), and talking to the person who I'll be replacing to find out how to do the job. I'm going to be the Outreach Specialist, meaning I coordinate family and adult events at the museum, do outreach events at schools and other places, and run the monthly Family Days. It's a lot of work, but it's what I've wanted to do for a long time. I'm excited, but also nervous...this is REAL. We did a lot of hands-on projects at school, but I always had a professor there to look over my shoulder. Now it's up to me, and the responsibility is daunting. Luckily my co-workers and supervisor all seem very nice and willing to help, so that's a good sign.

It's been exactly three months since I graduated, and my life has changed dramatically, from being a grad school student in Cooperstown, New York to being a museum employee in Fairbanks, Alaska. But I have Rory, and I have my kitties, and overall life is good.
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