Do What You Love: A revisit, five years later

It was just about five years ago, after leading the 2018 edition of my Palm Tree Ride, where I really thought long and hard about my future. I had been with the hostel for a dozen years, minus the year off for The Big Tour. By that point, my job hadn’t been fulfilling for a number of years. Sure, it was relatively easy, and I got things like health benefits, a decent amount of time off, and the ability to stay at other hostels for free. But everything else was stagnant: there was little chance for advancement (unless my boss quit, which was highly unlikely, and I wouldn’t want the job anyway) and very little in anything stimulating. And one of the things I loved about the job, seeing bike tourists, couldn’t sustain my enthusiasm for the job, especially since their numbers seemed to dwindle each year.

During that winter of 2018, an especially boring and unstimulating period at the hostel, I started to map out my own destiny. I would try to make a stab at being an artist again and work mostly for myself. It’s what I did in 2012, during that year mostly away from the hostel. I almost could have survived doing art, but the desire for benefits and more money, especially in order to move away from the place I was living, won out, and I found myself back at the hostel, even though I knew it was not a great idea.

And this time around I would have help. Emee was supportive of my plans. So after a stressful summer at the hostel, I quit my full time position in August, and would work part time there until Thanksgiving, when I finally had enough.

Five years later, I am happy that I made this decision. The road hasn’t been easy, as I floundered a bit in 2019, but found more solid ground in 2020, even as pandemic raged around the world. I’m definitely happier with myself. But I’m still not “making a living” doing art yet, supporting myself with other jobs to make ends meet.

I’m happy for all the support I’ve received from over the years. But the journey is nowhere near over. If you want to help me out, you can do so via three different ways:

  • Make a monthly contribution and get special perks via Patreon
  • Purchase things from my Shop
  • Or, “donate” via Ko-fi, which is a patreon-style site.

Over this year and into the next, I plan on creating more art. I hope to have a few zines published throughout 2023, I’ll keep you posted when they come out. Hope you’ll join me for the ride.


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