If Wolfram Alpha is to be believed it has been 4 months and 20 days since I last had to go to work. I must admit, I enjoyed every single one of those days. Though I loved the people I worked with and the company itself, working on Halo was not an easy task. I think a lot of my co-workers were at risk of burnout and I certainly was feeling some stress, so when October 10, 2014 rolled around, I was pretty happy to see that day. I felt particular elation on the first Sunday evening after my contract ended, that evening being October 12th. I didn’t have to be at work on Monday morning, didn’t need to be anywhere really, so there was no need to bed at a decent hour. I stayed up late, turned off my alarm clock (oh how good that felt), and slept in until I was good and ready to wake up.
That whole first week was just about getting rest and recovering from a whole summer’s worth of long hours. I immediately started eating better and though I didn’t know it at the time, I was also immediately started losing six pounds. After refreshing myself with a week’s worth of rest, the whole world was in front of me. I had a liberating sense of freedom. Admittedly, there was a lot of video game playing and late nights/early mornings. I recall a good stretch of time where I was staying up very, very late. Seeing the sunrise was a common occurrence and I began sleeping when people were just getting into work and waking up when people were going home from their jobs. I was just getting up at 3, 4, or sometimes 5pm. I recognized that I the complete freedom to do so but somehow it seemed like it would be better if I went to bed at a more decent hour. So, I dialed it in and started to go to bed at a more decent 4am hour.
I’ve appreciated my time off. I know that most people don’t have the luxury of just deciding not to work for four plus months. No matter what job you have, it kinda sucks to have to get up every day and go to work. Almost everyone wants to be doing something else with their time other than being work. I always kept that in mind during my time off. After an eight-hour gaming binge that started at 2pm on a Monday, I was more than aware that most people couldn’t spend that much time on a leisurely activity on a random basis. I was very thankful that if I decided that I wanted to just read a new book for the entire day, I could, and without any second thoughts.
Of course, there are some regrets. Every time, I have these long periods of freedom, I regret not being able to accomplish a few things. I regret not taking perhaps one more trip. I briefly toyed with going to London, England in late October but laziness took over. I regret not getting farther with that game I was making. I had the high-level concept figured out and installed all the tools I needed but again, I got lazy. When faced with either putting in some work or playing games or watching cat videos on YouTube, the lazy won out again. Lastly, I regret not leveraging my freedom of time more. Most people can’t regularly be somewhere at 3pm every Tuesday or 4am every Monday morning. I didn’t want to be at my local Denny’s at 2am every night but I should have explored things like what does a sunrise on Grouse Mountain look like? What kinds of foods can I get at 4am at the airport? Is there a weird club that only meets at 3am every Wednesday? Stuff like that.
So, once again, tomorrow morning I shall re-enter the workforce. It is my sincerest hope that I picked the best job that was available to me at the time. I go back to EA at the big campus in Burnaby for the first time since I was laid off November of 2010. It’s been over four years since I’ve worked there. I am sure it will be weird for a few days as memories (both good and bad) flood back to me. This is a one-year contract, so I know I have another opportunity for free time coming up in early 2016. Until then, however, tomorrow is another first day on the job.