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The Bookshelf

Doug's bookshelf: read

AntwerpWarsaw BikiniIcelandHow the Soldier Repairs the GramophoneThe Original of LauraBrief Interviews with Hideous Men

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Time Since Reboot

  • 1252 days, 3 hours, 34 minutes, 3 seconds ago

Week Two

Hello from (or to) Albuquerque.  It has been over a week now.  The new job is going to be great… as long as I can adjust to the technology.  I don’t think the coworkers I’ve talked to really believe me when I tell them I spent the past 3 years doing audits on 7- and 12- column ledger paper.  I feel like a caveman who has been chipped out of the ice.  But aside from that, the new firm seems to be a perfect fit for me professionally and philosophically.  

As for recreation… well, just look.  The only dilemma is deciding which direction to aim my camera.





I post to my photography site via lightroom, which is only installed on the big computer back in Birmingham.  So until my better half makes it out here (hopefully very, very soon), my little pictures will have to live here on the blog.  I hope you enjoy the views as much as I do.  There are many more where these came from, and many excursions ahead. 


(lovingly cross-posted to Duke City Fix)

Three Photographs From My First Albuquerque Weekend




Road Trip Photo Collage




IMG03294-20100814-1402IMG03296-20100814-1544 IMG03265-20100813-1801

Recapping A Busy July

Albuquerque by SmileLee

The Thursday before the Independence Day weekend I was informed by the partners that our firm had lost its largest client – a national labor union responsible for 30-35% of our total revenues – and was having to cut staff.  My position was one of those slated to be downsized.  They were generous enough to give me through the end of the year to find something else (a concession that was not extended to the hard-working bookkeeper let go at the same time or the always eager and willing staff accountant canned a few months prior), but in this economy, six months of job searching can go by without so much as a nibble.  Horror stories – from the closest of friends to statistics on the news – bore that out and quite clearly.  So after taking the long weekend to mull over my next move, I began to internet-carpet-bomb the five markets my wife and I had identified as acceptable and appealing places to live with my resumes and cover letters.

The bright side looked something like this:  if we HAD to relocate, we would never really be more mobile than we are right now.  We have no children; no elderly parents to take care of.  My wife’s job can be performed from anywhere her company has corporate offices (several states mostly in the southeastern and southwestern U.S.).  The only thing tying us down to Birmingham is our home – which in today’s housing market is quite the albatross… but the hassle of listing and selling our little bungalow would pale in comparison to the pressure and the gloomy financial uncertainty of a looming layoff.  Basically that is how it was decided – “home” in any case being wherever we were together and our sense of adventure being somewhat inflated from the last couple of years’ travels.

At the final count, I’d applied to 170 jobs.  The majority, I don’t mind telling you, were located in Manhattan… where I suspect pieces of my heart will always reside and beckon to me, poetically, from across the plains.  I applied for several local positions as well, even though once we’d opened the door to moving away, my wanderlust inspired daydreams of new experiences away from the cozy, familiar but (at times) stifling confines of our home state.  Of those 170 applications, I would guess maybe seven percent went to New Mexico.  Seventy percent of my responses came from there.  Some sort of weird CPA vacuum, perhaps.  Three Albuquerque firms requested interviews.  Three Albuquerque firms made offers.  The firm with the best offer won.  In two weeks, I will be permanently grammaticasting from the Land of Enchantment.

No, Albuquerque was not my first choice.  My enthusiasm for the Duke City may seem strange given my seeming longing for the concrete and the steel and the ever-pulsating human mass of New York.  But I am adept at adapting (and here I flash my shit-eating grin).  I can adapt to this.  What I long for, actually, is inspiration.  I feel it in the big city, with its coffee bars and galleries, its scale and its possibility.  I feel it, though, in solitude too.  There is something romantic about the vast, lonely expanses of deserts and mesas in the American West.  Also, there is still, in New Mexico, a vibrant and passionate artistic culture – more so in Taos and Santa Fe an hour to the north, but in and around Albuquerque as well.  So perhaps the trade off – chairs in crowded sidewalk cafes for solitary walks in the Sandia foothills – will be a refreshing one… and with a clear blue sky and the crisp desert air to clear my head. 

And as the moving date draws closer, I find myself growing more and more excited by the possibilities there.  Leslie and I each have an opportunity to grow and thrive professionally.  We get to go on another adventure together – exploring and discovering a home that is new to both of us.  I get new subjects to delve into, play with, photograph and chronicle.  It is a good thing.

Keep an eye on this blog.  I intend to fully document the journey.