When being broke was the good old days

Lately I’ve been thinking about what I’m doing with my life and what makes me happy. The new house has enough space for me to have a home office and I’ve found my photo albums, museum maps, posters, and old crap I had up in my college apartments in Minneapolis. The more I unpack the things that were important to me and think about where I’m headed in life the more I want to get back to my college days.

I shouldn’t complain about my life too much now. I have a fantastic job that is rewarding on so many levels – I can pay my bills and buy a car, I get to travel until my heart’s content, I actually look forward to going to work. Now I have security and a not uncertain future. In college I lived in cramped apartments (often with filthy roommates) and I was so worried about my future since I had no idea where I was going.

What do I envy about my college days in the frozen north? I guess what I miss the most is my sense of independence, my sense of self. I did things that made ME happy. Although there are plenty of decisions I should have made differently and I should have worked harder to make sure my school life was on track I did what I could to take care of me. Friday nights were burritos, books, and beer and on Saturdays I would walk down to Duffy’s in Dinkytown with a book to eat pizza and watch people. I would watch my favorite VHS tapes and crochet or play MMORPGs with pizza.

Sure there’s plenty of nostalgia involved. There were hard classes, bad relationships, frostbite. I was so poor I would have a bag of Combos, peanut butter M&Ms, and a Coke as my lunch and dinner. I ate tuna casserole all week, almost every other week for a while. I had low-paying jobs that required a commute at late/early hours and sometimes through sketchy parts of the city. A lot of times were lonely and I went through my fair share of heartbreak. Still, it was worth it.

So what can I do to get back the glory days in this rewarding life I have now? I need to take care of me, work for my own happiness, and find pleasure in the things I do.  When I travel and I explore I need to do it for me, not just thinking of all the people back home. I need to be more proactive in finding something to do. Maybe the problem is Las Vegas and it isn’t me – this town is crazy and it can be difficult to find things to do, especially now that I live on the edge of the desert.

 

I remember being happy and I’m going to go chase it.

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