Saturday, September 14, 2013

Hanging up the backpack :(

It's been a long time since I've posted.  It's been just over 1 year since I arrived home in Vancouver on what was supposed to be a temporary "healing" visit.  My knee is for the most part better now though I suspect I won't do some activities with the same level of vigor anymore. 
On the travel front I have accomplished nothing.  Been nowhere this year and have nothing at all to report on that front.  Just dreams and ideas....
I had been applying for acceptance into training in air traffic control.  I still can't say exactly why I finally applied for it or exactly what the main attraction is for me but somehow the choice just felt right.  Getting accepted was my focus for first half of my stay with the testing and interviews and stressful waiting.  Then I did pass and get accepted and was told to wait for a training offer.  Knowing only that that offer would be coming sometime within the following 18 months, I did the practical thing and got a temporary job driving a school bus. 
Have I mentioned how much I like driving a school bus?  It's so much better than driving my car.  Vancouver traffic is ridiculous by the way, but driving is easy enough for me, so when summer rolled around I got another job driving vans of foreign exchange students from the airport to their home-stay families around town.  So I rediscovered my workaholic mode, that had been lying dormant inside me for a while.  I had all of 2 days off through the whole summer.  But it was ok because was fun to relive the old tour days and meet foreign students and this time being able to tell most of them that I'd been to their country....
I then started tentatively planning my next trip but recently got "the call" and training offer.  Normally they give you 4-5 months notice but in my case I got only 2.  So I am now finishing up some of the application procedures (medical and background checks) and self-studying the material they've sent for us to prepare with.  I start my training Oct 15th.  I will be studying the VFR (visual flight rules) stream, to ultimately end up in an airport tower.  I am freaked out as it will be very intense and stressful and I'm feeling a little rusty on the study front.  But it's also exciting to be starting a new phase of life as well. 
The hardest part is having to accept that I won't be travelling again for a while, and certainly not the way that I had been before.  I know I can't complain because it has been an amazing experience that few ever get to have.  But it played such an important part in making me who I am, the better parts of who I am, that it feels like a betrayal to be finally admitting that it's time to hang up the backpack for a while and put my major focus elsewhere for a while.  I'm not done travelling by a long shot, there is still a ton I want to see and do, so I'll keep you posted if anything else interesting comes up.  In the meantime, if you aren't already doing it, I encourage everyone else to get out there and travel.  Go on, make me jealous.  The world is an amazing place...
Ammon

7 Comments:

At 4:55 PM , Blogger Cynthia McClure said...

I have really never blogged much. I felt like it & FaceBook and e-mails, texts and land line phones and memorizing my twin boys mobile numbers, changes of addresses , moving in and out of the house was going to put me over the edge.
We just returned from a huge 1 & 1/2 hour drive from Tulsa, OK to Stillwater, OK where our twins graduated from OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY in Finance. It is a really cool Agricultural University. Horses, veterinarians, preps, pre-med and of course FOOTBALL. When I graduated high school my parents expected me to have a zillion kids & clean the house. Not me. Ok, now my husband comes into the room to demand that we go out for junk food. I will continue in about an hour. Sorry. Got lot's to catch you up on. Bad timing!

 
At 9:53 PM , Blogger Cynthia McClure said...

Flying to Park City, Utah (SLC), then driving 6 hours Sunday Morningto make a return flight to Tulsa by 2pm. Having foot surgery on Wednesday.
Actually the junk food was pretty good.
After football ends , we will go to London & Hawaii& probably Scotland. Then its tax time. Haven't been to near as many countries as you. Will make up a list. Did scuba diving, climnbed some mountains, sailed US & BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS. Gotta run & get 4 hours sleep. Early flight. Will catch up soon! Sorry it took 4 months to notice I had a message!

 
At 4:40 AM , Blogger Savannah said...

Aaaw, Ammon, this post made me so sad... the closure of such a huge chapter. It's unbelievable what we accomplished and experienced together. It's like the ending of the Lord of the Rings. But I'm also super happy and so proud of you! We always knew you would miraculously manage something amazing on the work front when the time came. You have done incredibly well with your life so far, I'm anxious to see how the rest of it will play out.
Savannah

 
At 2:51 PM , Blogger Savannah said...

Hey, you know as well as I do... Nothing is more constant than change! One spectacular chapter ends to make room for the next exciting one to begin. And yet, I know forever you will have the travel bug and, most importantly, act on it when the timing is right for you!! You take an amazing personal history with you as you move forward in life! Know that your family loves and supports you at each foot step you take forward! -DAD

 
At 3:05 PM , Blogger Julie said...

Ammo, you've inspired us all and will continue to do so by simply being who you are! I've loved following your travels, sometimes daily, sometimes far less often, but it was always fun to catch up via your blog. Remember, "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." You will always be a traveller, of that I am sure. Hope our paths cross again someplace. Julie (Singapore, London, etc)

 
At 11:52 AM , Blogger The Bear said...

Hey Ammon,
I felt sad as Savannah said, like when I finish a great book. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed and relished reading your spin on the differences in cultures and the similarity of peoples. Nor how much I have missed them and noted the silencing of your voice. I am so very impressed that you made it into ATC, I have known people ove the years that have tried and failed to even get as far as you!!! Amazing work Ammon. email me your contact info in Vancouver so I can buy you lunch next I get there!!!
Big Bear Hugs and Love as Always your friend . The Bear

 
At 2:53 PM , Blogger Breanna Watkins said...

Ammon!! You are an awesome Oldest Brother and I love you so so so MUCH !! HEEHEE!!! I want to come on your next trip too!!! Great job on everything! Our family is awesome! Thanks for Leading us and taking us so far!! You are my hero!!
Bree Bree!!

 

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