Tuesday, May 08, 2007

An age that makes me glad I'm not a rock star after all

About three years ago, I set a symbolic goal for myself that centered around my driver's license. My plan was to never renew it for another one exactly like it, whether that meant living in another state or simply having a different local address. It wasn't necessarily that I didn't want to be in Louisiana anymore, but I'd felt like I hit a dead end regarding where I wanted to be creatively and professionally. Though I've traveled more or less constantly my entire life, I spent all those years living in one of two places, both in the same city. And by 2004, I was feeling a natural urge to carve my own path and see what might lay ahead for someone who has never fully fit in anywhere. I gave myself until the expiration of that license to figure something out. May 8, 2007. My 27th birthday.

Came in just under the wire. On February 3, 2007, I caught the flight I'd dreamed about for years. Okay, so that dream was generally in the form of a car traveling a much farther distance. But I'm still young, and it wasn't as if I was bringing along tiny bottles of shampoo anyway.

I've been at my current job for exactly 90 days, and it has renewed my vigor in ways that I'm still trying to translate to this blog. Don't let anyone ever tell you it's easy to move 600 miles away and spend most of your free time talking to yourself. But also don't let anyone tell you that you should never at least consider giving it a shot. Making your own way in life, whether it's moving far away or simply finding what you're looking for in your own hometown, is the purest form of happiness you can ever hope to achieve. It also gives you an opportunity to appreciate the little things in life that you took for granted before. Friends. Family. Fewer tornadoes. Evangeline Maid bread. Zapp's chips. Public drunkenness. New Orleans Saints fans. Oh, my sweet Saints!

"Soooo, Jim....how 'bout those property taxes?"

Okay, forget what I said. Stay in Louisiana.

Just kidding. Always do what's best for you, whatever that may be. My new license expires on May 8, 2013. Plenty of time to forge my next path. I hope to enjoy the ride.

Enjoy yours too.


Leigh C. said...

Woo hoo! Happy birthday!

At least you never got a neon "UNDER 21" hologram on your drivers' license like I did...

Ian McGibboney said...

Leigh, I did escape that and the dreaded vertical license, though I did have that thick red box around my pic until I was 23. Ah, to drive in pre-1995 Louisiana, when all you needed to forge a license was a Polaroid camera and a typewriter!

Cajun Tiger said...

Happy Bday...I've definitely followed that philosophy...I haven't lived in the same place for longer than 2 years since 94! Maybe that's a little too much moving, but I've definitely had lots of great experiences and been many interesting places.

Bridget said...

Happy Birthday Ian! I'm glad your having fun with your life, don't ever stop.

Becky said...

Happy Belated Birthday, Ian! (Shame on me, I thought it was this week for some odd reason.) Enjoy that new license, and keep talking to yourself -- it seems to be the only intelligence around anyway, especially since you left the rest of us here. ;)