Thursday, April 17, 2008

Rethinking the commute

These gas prices are starting to hurt. Hurt enough to make me really seriously consider job-searching closer to home. This isn't even a matter of me wanting to leave my current job, I enjoy my job, it's purely a matter of economics.

Let's put it this way. Once upon a time, when oil barons were only a little bit greedy and not wipe-their-asses-with-$100-bills greedy, I spent an average of $5 a day to commute to and from work. Now, I spend $20 a day. That's $100 a week and $400 a month. In gas. Just to get to and from work. That's just over one-fourth of my entire monthly wages. Which is INSANE. It's not a dire situation, not by any means, but when I think "$400 a month, in gas, just to get to work," my heart flip-flops a bit and all the things I would RATHER do with $400 goes through my head and I feel a little faint.

So, I started thinking about what other things I could, aside from doing the reporter gig. I could freelance, but that is so hit and miss with no guaranteed income that I'd be better off staying put. I could go back to working at a stables, mucking stalls, exercising horses, etc. etc. But that job pays dismally. There's no money in horses unless you have it to begin with.

I would really dig mowing lawns and planting trees and plants all day. I would also enjoy driving heavy equipment, like a bulldozer or a crane. That would be awesome. I could work at a dairy farm...there are plenty of those around us!

Notice a trend? I'm looking at outdoor jobs. I've always hated working inside and was really, truly happiest when I did work outside, with my hands and my whole body, rather than just driving a telephone and a keyboard most of the day. I loved the jobs I've had in the past where I can finish my day, look out over what I actually physically accomplished that day, feel the work I'd done, and called it a good days' work.

4 comments:

Krista said...

Good luck with that... I'm guessing there isn't any kind of reasonable bus option. I've never lived in a place where a bus commute was reasonable for me. :( I did manage to carpool a lot in Seattle (which also freakin' rocked the carpool lane!).
The hubby took the bus quite a bit last year and this year got a job much closer to home. I of course, have a 5 foot commute. But sometimes I wish I could get out of the house more...

Jenn said...

Nope, no busses at all. We don't even have cabs. I could probably organize some kind of drive your horse-and-buggy to work thing...

I'd LOVE a five-foot commute.

Carla said...

I feel very fortunate that I too can work from home. I do have to be out in the "trade" but my employer also pays my gas. I don't know how it can continue to go up...yikes!

nell said...

We been having the same problem (as I'm sure many people have) and it's scary when you stop to think about it in those terms. Since we're moving soon we haven't really thought about finding Steve a new job, but if we were staying here we'd have to. It's crazy!