Keep Laying Down That Asphalt – 11 November 2012
First off, happy Pocky Day to everyone. Don’t know what that is, look it up. It’s pretty cool.
Now on to more… mind-weary matters.
One of the best things about spending a year abroad is the chance to plan for and think about what my moves for the next year should be. I suppose this is also the worst thing, because I have absolutely no idea what the next year to eighteen months will bring. Granted, this time is excellent for any number of reasons, but the fact remains that I don’t have long to go before I’m graduated from Clemson – and thinking about that next step is beginning to weigh heavy on my conscious.
I thought about this last night, about how, for the most part, my adult life has been more or less paved in front of me, and as long as I walked down the middle of the road, I’d end up somewhere that wasn’t surrounded by bars or lined with lead. But now – now it seems that the asphalt is quickly coming to an end, and it’ll soon be time to pave some more. But in which direction?
Of course, graduate school is always an option, but, when that’s over I’ll probably be in the same boat. Studying abroad will go a long way to making that happen – but to what end? I feel if I do go that route it’ll be more for studying English than Japanese, and that’s not a bad plan. But on the flip I may decide that I’d like to live here for a couple years and teach English. That’ll improve my Japanese skills, no doubt, but the window to get an upper-level degree in English will probably narrow considerably.
I suppose the best thing about both of these plans is that, in all likelihood, they’ll carry me as far away from my home boundaries as I’d like. And that’s something that’s most definitely on my bucket list. Given that, I still have no idea what direction my life will lead me. I’m not part of legacy, a family of lawyers or bakers or farmers or something like that. Whatever path I’ll forge will be mine, and mine alone.
Now, what with this huge three-and-a-half month break coming up, I’ll have nothing but time to worry about it. And, as my time here comes to a close, it’ll become more pressing as time goes on.
To be honest, when I first got to Clemson, it felt like I’d be there forever – key words – felt like. Graduation seemed a long, long way off. And that was two years ago. I suppose I forgot that I was twenty-four then. Now I’ll be twenty-seven when I leave here. I’m rapidly approaching thirty, and not having any clear sense of direction now kinda freaks me out. For the longest time I’ve resisted thinking ahead more than six months, and these days, I’m coming to find that this strategy will no longer work.
But I’ll think of something. I always do. Gotta keep laying down that asphalt.