A bit of news that's been simmering for a long time and is now properly cooked: After more than a decade in Chicago, Susan and I are moving to San Diego.
This one's on me, I'm afraid. In May, my employer announced that our work site was shutting down in March of 2017. Part of the employees would be transferred to other places, but our unit was going to be relocated to the west coast. After a protracted wait, the paperwork was finally completed this week, and we'll probably be heading out at the beginning of the year.
I've gotten amazing support from my significant other while all of this was playing out. Considering her attachment to Chicago (she was, after all, spent virtually her entire life in the city), Susan was (almost shockingly) receptive to the news. Over the years, I've worn her down on the idea of moving and it might not be too much to say that she was excited at the news (we never seriously discussed me finding a new job in Chicago). A few west coast visits during the cold months in Chicago may have had something to do with this. Fun mini story: we were traveling when I received the serious-looking email announcing the changes. These were described in the title of the message as a "reorganization", corporate codespeak for lay-offs. Indeed, the email's first sentence announced the elimination of a nearby group. Certain I was about to announce my own layoff, I read the next line. My voice went from normal to a borderline little-girl scream as I processed the meaning of the words an instant before they came tumbling from my mouth. "Are you kidding me?" Susan asked disbelievingly. In reply, I spun the screen around for her to read, then we had the fourth-most-intense bear hug in recorded history.
Kind of ironically, it was my job that had always tethered us to Chicago. With a pretty good gig here, it simply didn't make socioeconomic sense to start over in one of the biotech-rich, high-COL/high-tax environment like a Boston or California. Ironically, it was the very career that kept us in the midwest that finally freed us from its wintry grasp.
One thing that had concerned me when we decided to commit was Susan finding an equally good new job. I needn't have worried. Apparently the market for emergency room veterinarians is incredibly robust in southern California; to wit, Susan's job search was both anticlimactic and brief: the evening before we left for the Society for Neuroscience meeting in San Diego, she sent out a generic email to four hospitals in the area mentioning that she would be in the area the next few days. I'm not even sure she attached a resume. Thirty-six hours later, all four had written back, and within four days of the initiating of her half-assed job search Susan had interviewed at all four places, all of which offered work on the spot.
Anyhoo, we're really excited to try out a new part of the country. To our friends and family in Chicago (and elsewhere), allow me to preemptively answer the question you may be planning on slipping into our next conversation: yeah, we'll have a spare bedroom in our new place.
Noah's Inner Monologue
Scribblings of a man who can barely operate an idiotproof website.