shapeofthings: (Beach me)
[personal profile] shapeofthings
So hello. I am alive. I am remarkably busy for someone (still) unemployed, but that happens when you're applying for every job you can (including Government response to selection criteria), setting yourself up as an independent consultant (getting the admin sorted, working networks, defining your 'product') and trying to maintain some semblance of a life.

I'm an independent consultant specialising in environmental governance and compliance, or at least that's what my promo blurb says. Still, there's a sniff of a contract with the EPA on the horizon that I'd rather like to come off.

I'm also still looking for full time work. The original plan was to develop the business on the side over the next year or two whilst working, but I don't handle a lack of agency well so when job hunting was getting me nowhere I fast-tracked the plans. Now I have two interviews this week for jobs I think I'm a solid shot at, after a long quiet spell and a disappointing near miss.

Oh, and I've started an online course through Monash Uni on Water for Sustainable and Liveable Cities. I'm enjoying it, but if I follow up on all the reading and links that interest me it'll be far more than the promised 4 hours a week. Hmmm.

Two days a week I haunt a co-working space in the city, joining the worker-drones on their daily commute. It's where I come to write and work on the business. It's keeping me sane. And hey look, I finally updated my serious blog! Grief and the Reef: coral bleaching, climate change and you.

I haven't had the DSLR camera out since New Zealand, back in January. I just haven't been in the photography zone. I haven't been hiking as much as I'd like, and climbing's a serious struggle now I live on the wrong side of the city, deep in the 'burbs. Melbourne is too big and difficult to get around, this vast urban sprawl that costs us all so much time, money and environmental condition. Yeah, it's still not home and I doubt it ever will be. Medium-terms plans are being formulated that plot a viable escape. I long to live somewhere beautiful again. I miss the mountains.

The guy is with me on this. We continue to go well, and I'm journeying through all sorts of self-exploration and revelation as I unpick the damage of divorce, past bad relationships and a messed-up childhood.

When I say we're going well, that includes a shared frustration with Melbourne and the whole political-economic bullshit Australia - and most of the rest of the world - is being sold. A recognition that we're in a game that's rigged and we've got no real chance of winning, so we're trying to work out how to not play without being punished for it. When everyone around you has drunk the kool-aid it's hard to not seem like the crazy ones, and for now we're playing the part well enough while we work out how best to decouple from broken systems. Harder for him with his drive for status and admiration from his peers. My lovely weirdo friends are far less judgemental. Still, I could really use some clothes that fit properly, and a decent hair cut.

I could really use the ability to plan, to believe in a future and take the steps to bring it to bare.

I've even reached out to my networks in Peru. I could handle Lima again, for a few months.

One thing that is happening is thinking. Long and hard and deep about society and culture, economics and politics, mental chains and social conditioning. Thinking about this mess our species has got ourselves in. We're quite screwed, you know. If climate change doesn't mess us up first (and I think it will) the rising inequality will spill over violently somewhere, and as the Trump phenomena shows, conditions are ripe for fascisms and hate to drive our politics. Society is generating too many losers.

One day I might get around to articulating all this properly, but for now writing needs to focus on what will resonate with my potential market and help develop my networks and reputation. It's less fun than exploring the darker stuff echoing around my head but it's still better than pushing out academic essays, even if I can't help but reference things still.

Not dead, but living just enough out-of-step with my surroundings to generate that sleep-walking feeling. Pondering the shape of things to come.

September 2017

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