I finally put my butt in the chair to end my unplanned hiatus from blogging. My usual Sunday slot of blogging has been interrupted the last two weeks first by my birthday party, and then a trip to Croatia. I tried to squeeze in a blogging session on my birthday, but I felt forced to write something profound, and wilted under the pressure to crank something out. Today I went with my usual strategy of rambling about whatever comes to mind.
I turned 36 which is kind of like 32: you’re older but the number doesn’t carry the same mental weight as the ages that are divisible by 5 & 10. 40 is on the horizon of course, but just far enough away that I can safely live in ignorance.
One thing I’ve noticed though is that the traditional age/where you should be in life isn’t anything like it was when I was growing up, at least amongst the bubble of the world that I inhabit. I remember graduating college and thinking by the time I was 25/26 I would be married with kids, even when I wasn’t in a relationship at that time. Of course there have been opportunities for me to go that route during my adult life, and a few times I considered it, because isn’t that what you are supposed to do? Luckily for me (a personal thing that I wouldn’t generalize to others) I never succumbed to that as I was too curious to experience more of life and the world. I’m still curious of course, but now my interests are more about doing more/better of the things that are important to me vs. discovering what those things even are.
I think for most people their purpose becomes providing for their children, and I can imagine this would be one of the riskiest, longest, and most rewarding decisions that you can take on. I find it very interesting to see what people do after their kids are safely sufficient though, and they can potentially retire. Purpose isn’t just given to you then, you have to create it and find something you might be interested in. No easy answers as I wrestle with this myself as someone who is “semi-retired”.
Croatia was a relaxing trip with one of my favorite outcomes: I got a bit bored. I can imagine many other variations of the trip that I took, which placed me in the most touristy areas during the most touristy time of the year, but I think this was good for me. I still ate some good food and drank decent wine, but there wasn’t a lot more going on than that. By the end I felt like I couldn’t procrastinate from my work any longer, and yesterday (getting back at 2 am) finished/deployed the first version of a new trading strategy that I’ve been thinking about for months. I went with a big group and mostly followed their plans, which was centered around hanging out at the beach/pool with their kids. Totally different than my usual trips (where I like to explore more local things), but it was a useful break. If I went again I would go on a boat trip with friends island hopping, a trip that I actually paid for and had to skip a year ago.
I also have been working on my writing, studying story structure and building more thorough outlines for some ideas I have than I’ve ever done before. On the reading front I’ve finished several books continuing with my crime genre classics.
Over the past two weeks I finished: “The Friends of Eddie Coyle”, “Tomato Red”, and “Pop. 1280”. Each book is very different, and has some area of the craft that was inspiring for me as a writer. I wouldn’t recommend any of them to a casual reader, but if someone was studying what can be done combining the literary genre with crime these are great. It’s been helping me discover my own taste as far as how much description/prose/fancy writing I like vs. something actually happening. I usually get bored when the ratio is skewed too far in either direction.
Leaving you with a picture from a marina in a small town along the coast between Dubrovnik and Split. One of the highlights of the trip was actually that drive: mountains, ocean, charming houses.