Sunday, June 24, 2007

Lazy Sunday afternoon

Hey all. It's Sunday afternoon about 5:00 and we're praying for rain. Clouds have been zooming by all afternoon with some occassional thunder and we're hoping for a nice, long, set in (southern . . . sorry) rain.

I got in 3 miles this afternoon in the opressive heat and humidity. MAC rode her bike with me but we actually had to stop for water mid-way. It was mid 90s and indescribable. Sort of like New Orleans or Houston. Just plain old nasty. I told MAC that we were going to go slow and for that we were both grateful. I was using the run as a recover from yesterday's bike ride. The legs were not sore . . . just a wee bit tired. I guess the worst part of the run today was the fact that my hamstrings felt like they were about to cramp. Never did buy I could tell they were on the edge.

Saturday's bike ride-it was my first semi-long ride this year. I've been doing 26 milers every Wed after work but decided to join my compadres for an early Saturday morning jaunt around south Shelby county. Larry M was the ride leader and wanted to start at 6:30. Half the folks wanted to start at 7:00. We compromised on 6:45 wheels down and rolling. Of course I slept late and had to scamper to make it. I always wonder about how smart it is to drive 30 minutes to ride my bike for 40 or 50 miles. Wouldn't it be nicer to just start at my house, go out 20 or 25 miles and then turn around and come home? Of course it would but then I'd be having to climb some of the taller mountains in the state (not that we're known for big mountains). Anyway, I made it in time to do a quick safety check on my bike, put on shoes, throw my cell phone, pistol, and insurance card in the saddle pack, and head out with the group. My legs were tired from the week's running and riding but we had several folks who hadn't done much distance (including me) so we agreed to make it an easy ride. The first 12 miles were a breeze, cruising along shady two lane roads and the sun still not above the tree line on the horizon. We made a quick stop after 12 miles for quick water and some folks even took on some gel. I felt pretty good despite the slow start earlier in the morning. The next leg was about 16 miles and included a few rolling hills and some open fields (SUN, no shade). We'd get a straggler on the hills (no, not me!) and slow down for them to catch up and start rolling again. I was ready for a snack after the second leg and we all took about a 10 minute stop at one of the local gas stations where we normally stop and the attendant is always friendly and will round down purchases to keep us from having to carry change. We always make sure that we try to do business there when we can and always leave loose change to make up for the Saturday rides. After a bottle of something blue and a gel, I was ready to tackle the final leg back to the cars. The last leg was going to be around 17 or 18 miles and it was starting to heat up. There is a beautiful stretch of road that has just been paved and there is very little traffic on it. We jumped into a double pace line and hammered out 10 miles in no time. The last 7 miles or so hits some rolling hills but is luckily in the shade. We all made it back to the cars sweaty but safely. Total ride was 45 miles with an average speed of 16.1 mph. Not great but not shabby considering folks like me were on board and undoubtedly slowing down our faster riders.

On a side note, I've been teasing my parents with a deliberate lack of information concerning part of my personal life. Sometimes you just don't want to bother folks with the minutia of life. I've decided that I'll spill the beans today. Over the last six months or so, the brain trust at work has been studying a restructuring of the organization. In such a Dilbertesque, they announced their intentions of "studying" the organization and benchmarking against our competitors. They have since updated us with the progess no more than twice. This past week, they had what they like to call a "town hall meeting" with us to inform us that they a new organizational structure that they will put in place over the next several months. Let me take a quick moment to assure my parents that I do have a job . . . not to worry about that. However, the question over the last six months has been: where will I have a job? I found out this past week that they have decided that the design engineering teams need to be located at the plant sites and not in the corparate office. The bottom line is that they want to relocate about 60 folks to the three nuclear sites. That includes me. HMMMMMMM. The question is this: do I want to live in Vidalia, GA. Don't get me wrong. I like Vidalia. I've spent lots and lots of time down there. I lived down there for a couple of year in the 80s and spend between weeks at a time down there even now. But do I want to be a resident? Believe me, I've been thinking about this long and hard for months since the rumors (fairly accurate, by the way) started flying early. Of course being one that does not like other folks making decisions for me, I started beating the bushes for other jobs, internal and external to my company. I've had offers to work as a contractor in other parts of the country for VERY GOOD money. However, a move away from home is a move away from home. That is sort of a do it as last resort kind of thing. I've been talking to folks I know in another subsidiary of our mother company and there is lots of work over there (next door in the next office building). However, I'd be making the switch from nuclear design to working on scrubber and SCRs (environmental controls) for our systems coal plants. That is sort of uncomfortable too. I know nuclear. I like nuclear. All my background and contacts are in nuclear. Now I'm thinking about working at the direction of the tree huggers (no offense intended). I have an interview on Tuesday morning with the environmental group and I feel pretty confident that I can have the job. And get this . . . to further complicate matters, one of the vice presidents contacted me ex-parte this past Friday. He told me that I didn't want me to go next door and that the company does not want to lose my knowledge and experience. HMMMMM . . . . . sounds flattering. What's the catch? They want me to take a job as a cost estimator and out of engineering. He said that this would only by for a while til the dust settles but I'm not sure I want to take that route either. I'd stay in nuclear but out of design. What's a boy to do? Can I find a rich woman out there to marry me???? (Susan, I'm just kidding). That is my quandry . . . . do I keep my job and move out of town? Do I continue work in design engineering but change what I work on? Do I stay with my present company where my background and knowledge are strong but learn a new task? Or do I say heck with them all and go chasing around the country in search of the mighty dollar? Your feedback is certainly welcome!

Have a great week!


Ashville said...

Third time I'ver tried to comment, so if you get three, they are all from Me. Decision time and you will make the right one. Do you want to leave home? Are your roots here? Is your future here? So, move next door in your company and take up something new,(coal-fossil thing) if you can do one thing great, you can do another thing greater--you have the brain power so it is your decision.You are not that far from retirement anyway. We are with you on whatever you choose, but think deeply on this decision.

Aunt Susan said...

Well, all the ones that say they don't want you to go but it is your decision really don't want you to go. And we are not going to let you. Sooooo, decision made, now you don't have to worry about that anymore. Hey you might like coal better than nuclear anyway, lot less dangerous. You did ask for feedback, remember.

Debi said...

Jim, We don't want you to leave either. Just think there are too many houses for sale already in our neighborhood. We will keep you in our prayers but we are hoping that it is not God's will for you to leave. Have fun in HH!

Anonymous said...

Don't go--all the ones who love you say "don't go."

Anonymous said...

I sent

Anonymous said...

You know how we feel. Go for the adventure and try something new! If they love you in nuclear so much, whatever they have in mind will probably still be there so if you hate the coal thing perhaps you could go back.
Am I taking a risk knowing that you don't like being told what to do? Okay...the truth is
A. we don't want to break in someone new next door and B. we would miss Kelsy and Susan....It really has nothing to do with you.