Monday, December 5, 2011

Feeling the need for distance

I just don't get enough time on the bike now. It's dark so early, and I miss the rides.

I daydream more and more about just leaving everything behind, getting on the bike and just going. Of course, I realize one can't just go like that without some means of self-support. Part of me just really wants to escape, to leave behind all these things that weigh me down emotionally and financially.

I find it incredible that although I have been in Los Angeles for nearly 22 years, and inflation has increased steadily in those 20 years, salaries have not. In fact, searching for a day job that will better handle the financial obligations I have has so far proven to be fruitless at best. In 1995 I was making $25 an hour. Today I'd be lucky to get $12.50 an hour - and that's what I was making as a temp in 1989 when I moved here. It was a livable salary then. Gas was lower, rent was less. With a 40-hr week at $12.50 an hour, I'd only be spinning my wheels after taxes, not making enough to meet any financial obligations except maybe a roof over my head and some bills, but heaven forbid I should put food on the table of gas in the car. And heaven forbid one of my animals gets sick, something goes wrong with the car, or something goes wrong with me requiring medical care. Oh yes, no health insurance can be afforded.

Do I want to escape from this ridiculous madness? Yes, I certainly do. Do I want to just get on a bike and not look back? Yes, I do. Maybe one day that will happen, but right now, I still have a dog and cat to care for. The cat is nearly 20, and the dog is maybe 13-14, and I have to wait until they both pass on before I do anything rash. However, I think I am going to start some serious purging of things in my apartment. I need to be unencumbered.

Maybe part of my cross country bike trip can be to find a new place to live and start over. Starting over doesn't scare me, even at age 52. Somewhere, something has got to give.

For right now, however, I am staying with my part-time job and barely making ends meet... sometimes to the penny. I need additional income, that's for sure. I just don't know where it's going to come from. Cookie sales are dismal and book sales are few and far between. So frustrating.

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