My 5 year goal was to spend a summer in Yosemite and write a book. That happened to be the very reason I was sorting through the files. I was throwing away old paperwork as I prepared to quit my job and make that 5 year goal a reality. My last day was June 30th.
The hairbrained idea predates that goal setting session. I was still sitting in an office in Cincinnati when I decided I needed another summer in Yosemite. Yes, “another.” I lived in and worked in Yosemite for the summer of 1996. I stayed in a tent cabin in Tuolomne Meadows and hiked miles each day to our research plots for three biological studies. When I drove back to the Sierra Nevada in 1998 for another summer job, I pulled over at the first Jeffrey Pine, wrapped my arms around it, inhaled the scent of its sun-warmed bark, and thought, “I’m home.” I sniffed trees all summer long in the forests around the park. Yosemite is my favorite place in the world.
Back in Cincinnati, I estimated the costs of a three-month sabbatical in Yosemite and started saving. My savings were repeatedly thwarted by spur of the moment trips and Forever 21 binges. I was starting to feel very frustrated when my Great Grandmother died and left me the exact amount I had budgeted for the trip.
But I couldn’t seem to get the time off approved. Despite a policy that allows employees 3-month, unpaid, leaves of absence, the timing was never right. I had originally planned to do my Yosemite summer before I turned forty, but forty had come. After being denied my sabbatical, again, this year, I made the decision to leave my job to make my dream come true.
I have the means, the time, the support, and the will to achieve my 5 year goal of living in Yosemite for the summer and writing a book. I'm so excited for this adventure!
Are you curious about my 20 year goal? It is to live in another country for a year. I bet I can make that one happen, too.
Follow along on Instagram @kasmirakit #yosemitechronicles