One of the wonderful things about my unemployment (there are...a couple, I suppose) is that I really couldn't have timed it any better...I got summer vacation as an adult. About a week after my last day at work, I left Seattle for Houston to stay with my mom for a while. The weather change couldn't have been more abrupt, but waking up every morning to a cloudless, robin's egg blue sky definitely has its perks. The 30 degree temperature increase took a little getting used to, but soon enough, I was decked out in my finest sundresses and letting my pale legs and arms get some sun.
I wake up later than I generally would, make tea and feed the dogs. I eat a breakfast of Cheerios and watch the news with my mom. Then I begin a day of job hunting and occasionally, a little bit of writing as well. Halfway through the day, I take a lunch break and indulge in my favorite guilty pleasure; Judge shows. There are so many to pick from! After I've numbed my brain a sufficient amount, I round up the tiny dogs and take them for a walk. When we've returned and the puppies have been watered, I resume my job hunting. There's dinner and another walk for the puppies and some TV watching with my mom.
My favorite thing to do before bedtime is go outside on the back patio, light a citronella candle and breathe in the warm, Texas summer air. During the daytime, the thickness of the air can be oppressive and overwhelming. In the evening, however, the warmth that lingers in the air blends with the smells of flowers and freshly cut grass (always cut your grass at dusk when you live in hot climates!) and it is intoxicating. If I close my eyes, I can feel myself drift back in time, to when my "real life" wasn't immediate or looming, and the days stretched ahead, filled with limitless possibility.
On Monday, I head back to Seattle for a job interview. If I get the job, I will no doubt be thrilled. A permanent, non-contract position will afford me the sort of stability that lends itself to leasing an apartment and finally fully becoming an adult. There's also a shot that I might have a few dates this summer, and that maybe I might get into grad school. Monday will be back to the real world.
Unemployment is an uncomfortable and mentally taxing time. The leisure I have is due to the fact that my parents are generous enough to let me stay with them until I sort out this life of mine. But what I know now is that life moves so incredibly quickly; it seems like it was just last year when I was having full 3 month summer vacations from college or high school. Without the punctuation marks of vacations and exams, dances and football games, adult life drops into a pattern that ticks along quickly and without slowing to remind you that the year 2009 is halfway over. With my break/contract ending, I had one more shot at the languid, drowsy pace of the summer vacations of yesteryear. I enjoyed them more than I ever could have imagined.