This past week has been a little surreal.
Three weeks ago I accepted a position at a consulting firm in San Diego. I am very excited about the change, but the decision has one fundamental flaw:
I had to leave the island.
I've been on the island for three years (on and off, of course, we got 4-day weekends every other week in San Diego). Three years is a lot of time to amass tons of stuff and memories. As it often happens, I ended up with more stuff to take off the island than I had originally anticipated. I found the same with memories, which were probably heavier than the clothes and field gear.
There are so many things that I'm going to miss, such as friends, shrikes, and a free gym. I know that I'll make friends in San Diego, and I'm not concerned that I won't. I'm just going to miss my island friends, and all the activities we'd engage in. Making a group dinner in the field kitchen. Watching movies together. Snorkeling when it's warm enough to swim. When I was on the plane this past Friday afternoon, I watched my housing and office get smaller and smaller as we climbed higher and higher until it finally disappeared. I'm not gonna lie, my eyes got a little misty (side note: I swear, I barely ever cry).
I'm going to miss seeing D every day the most. Not much more I need to say about that.
At the same time, I am also excited to start a new chapter of my life in San Diego. I'm going to be in a stable living condition for the first time since college. I can take cooking and yoga classes, two things that have been on my bucket list. I may have been in California for three years now, but I still feel like a tourist; maybe now I'll become a "regular" somewhere. I'm going to start a new job that I hope will vastly expand my skill set.
It's going to be a huge change, but I welcome it.
So, goodbye island! Goodbye shrikes! I hope someday we will meet again.