2007 September 7
by barclay

I know I’ve been saying that “there’s adventures in the works” for at least a year or two, and it’s finally time I can reveal what all the mystery was about. Some of you know, some of you may not. In any case I talked about doing one of two “adventures,” and of doing both if I could.

One was a special high-intensity training program for my martial arts. All outdoors in nature, two to four hour classes, two to four days a week, plus a significant amount of my own training time outside of class. The idea was to really dig in to the art. Well, I did the full six-month run of those classes, and then some, and for the last five months I’ve been taking six to eight private lessons per week with my instructor. Will I end up with some sort of ranking out of this? Perhaps. More importantly, I know that the sort of content I’ve been getting out of the last year and change of training is exactly what I was looking for in the art.

The second adventure was traveling: I was planning on selling the house, saving up money for a year or so, quitting my job, and backpacking the world for a year taking photos. This plan didn’t quite work out – as expected, that is. The bad news is the that house didn’t sell, and I had to rent it out. I really didn’t want to spend a year abroad having the anchor of a partial mortgage to pay on a monthly basis.

The interesting turn of events is that a company that offered me a job a two years ago recently came back to me and asked me what my current situation was. Two years ago, I just wasn’t in a position to take the offer, particularly since it required relocation. And, they have offices in Dublin, Zurich, Sidney … hmmm. Consider my curiosity piqued. We go back and forth a bit, and they send out another offer. A good offer.

Fast forward to this last Tuesday, September 4th. At 2 P.M., I meet with my supervisor. I tell him I’ve got this offer in, and I think I’d like to take it, but I also want to make sure I have the time to finish the current tasks at work before I leave. After all, my current company has been good to me, and I don’t want to leave them in a tough spot. I tell him it’s not “going from something, but going to something.” I don’t dislike it here, but I believe I’d really like to work for this other extremely well-regarded company.

After returning from that meeting, I see a new email in my box. “Company meeting at 4:30 P.M.” There’s something about the terseness and tone, the time, and the day of the week that send a shiver down my spine. I know what’s going to happen. And it’s a good thing.

Two hours after I tell me supervisor that I’m quitting, it is announced that our company has been sold.

Yup. I don’t know how, but I knew. Strange.

It’s been acquired by a solid company, and the deal is great for everyone involved. I’m given a very good offer – salary increase, stock, shares, performance bonuses, matching 401(k), retention bonus, all the goodies. It’s a damn good package.

I have to sleep on it.

Today, I made my decision: I will no longer be continuing employment at my current company. It was a tough decision to make, but I believe it’s the right one.

I’m going to work for Google.

I’ll be undergoing a week of training in the Mountain View office starting October 15th, and then returning to the Santa Monica office for at least a year and a half. Why “a year and a half”? After that, you’re eligible for transfer. Well, Zurich is right in the middle of Eastern and Western Europe, has a great train system, and you get the European standard five weeks of vacation per year … hmmm, that might not be a bad way to travel….

(And yes, ‘Nae is down with going.)

So that’s why I’ve been off the map lately. I’ve had more than my usual share of tasks to take care of lately.

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