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Old 07-17-2013   #21
Otterwolf's Avatar
Derby, Connecticut
Paddling Since: 1975
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 27
Question: What good will this Phd do ya??

Out here, you might be able to get a job in a conveinance store or something, meaning they are a dime a dozen.

The trick is securing a job that allows you to live your life.

I got lucky.
I work 2nd shift in a factory 40 hours a week, the rest of the time I'm either kayaking, free diving, or with my dog.

You can do it too - just figure out what really matters and what you need to accomplish that.
Then you go about deciding how to pay for your way of living.

Don't get me wrong, there are times I can't stand what I am doing - but I love having my mornings and early afternoons always free, not too mention 5 weeks vacation (I've been there a long long time) and just being able to live my life as I see fit.

In the end, that's all that really matters

Enjoy !!

"Catch Me If You Can...."
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Old 07-17-2013   #22
Land of Lovin, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2006
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,449
I come from a family of medical professionals, they were all highly disappointed when I dropped out of college and I caught a lot of flak. I was told my dream of becoming a massage therapist was silly by my entire family (this was in 1995, and I didn't end up going to massage school) and I was basically forced into going to regular college. I was also paying cash for my college education and the prospect of going into massive debt for my education didn't seem realistic to me so I dropped out when my cash ran out.

Despite not going to college I live debt free and make a really good living, enough that my husband doesn't have to work. Sometimes things work out well, even if you didn't listen to what everyone else told you.

Ultimately it is YOUR life, what other people think is right isn't always right for you. In fact the general theme of American life with car payments, mortgage payments, insurance payments etc. isn't actually all that fun. Sure my family is disappointed in me but I chose a different lifestyle than they did. Instead of a constant car payment I buy kayaks, rafts, SUP's etc, I spend my money on gardening not my lawn.

I drive an old car, don't have fancy stuff or buy expensive artwork, that stuff doesn't define me, my experiences do.

Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. - Voltaire
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Old 07-17-2013   #23
Boise, Idaho
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 505
I echo what most everyone else has said, but have one warning:

If you move anywhere out west that has decent paddling, be prepared for an extremely tough and/or limited job market. Most of the paddlers here are either doctors of some sort (some nurses), self-employed, or broke and underemployed.

These are hard places to make a living.
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Old 07-17-2013   #24
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 350
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Old 07-17-2013   #25
Old Guy in a PFD
Tucson, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1967
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 1,022
Biggest mistake I made was to quit running and concentrate on my job

It's possible to do both, if you really want to

And take them eggheads on a trip; get em wet, drunk, and sleeping inna dirt. If they don't get infected you got the wrong friends.
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Old 07-17-2013   #26
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 166
Originally Posted by Ken F View Post
I used to live in Chapel Hill for about 12 years and liked it a lot. Why not get a PhD in surface water hydrology or computational fluid dynamics and combine kayaking with science. Just think of the research potential on bedrock stream flow, which would need to be field tested in a kayak.
"computational fluid dynamics" Is that the study of fluid movement in a bootie beer
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Old 07-17-2013   #27
ranamafana's Avatar
Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1800
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 54
There is nothing wrong with wanting to kayak all the time, regardless of your education, background, employment, etc. If you just finished your undergrad like it sounds, it's totally "right" on to take time to refresh your perspective on what you want from your life. I fell in love with kayaking when I was in college in N Cal, which led me to become a raft guide for many years. I found my "tribe" in the river, national park, mountain, climbing, powder hound, caving, firefighter, etc., outdoor seasonal work community, though my main place has always been the river. It's been great. There is nothing wrong with not being sure if you want to jump into grad school straight out of undergrad, doesn't mean you can't/won't make that decision at a future date, if it's right for you. Personally, after lots of seasons working on the river along with misc. mtn. town jobs the rest of the year, (which kept me healthy/happy, but poor,) I decided to return to school, and am in the final stretch of my doctoral studies. Grad school & outdoor fun don't have to be mutually exclusive. In the 3 years I've been at it I've managed to find time for a private Grand trip, paddling an hour or 2 (or 3 or 5) most days in the play park when there's water, backpacking, mtn biking, a road trip to Mexico, powder days, etc.. Sure I've had to miss some of the big storms, and river trips, but once I'm finished, I look forward to work that I love that will let me keep enjoying my life, with the added benefit of greater financial stability, something that is nice to have at certain point in your life. But if that's not something you're worried about right now, don't worry about it! have fun & go explore the world & paddle your butt off!'d be better off falling in love with someone that likes the same kind of sugar(s) as you, than finding a sugar mamma
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Old 07-17-2013   #28
caspermike's Avatar
Bozeman, Montana
Paddling Since: 1999
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,507
Originally Posted by Kendrick View Post
Ha that's a sad outlook! I don't know anybody like that photo.

What good is money if you aren't living! Live first because you only get one shot so don't waste your time being unhappy. There's being smart and doing what you love and just being a total slave to society! I choose happiness anyday.

I love my wife and kayaking so you make do with what you have sometimes finding you and what you love is the answer don't let your passions go. Simple as that. Maybe I'm off in some views but you get what you get. I'd rather be living in a teepee on a UFO traveling the globe on a magnetic motor but sometimes it just doesn't work like that..
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Old 07-17-2013   #29
Flagstaff, Arizona
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 382
Don't hesitate to call it a lifestyle

I work for myself 6 mo out of the year. I couldn't have done it without continuing my education. My family is always wondering why I spend so much time without a job. You can't go boating if all you do is work. If boating is your work, you better spend more days private boating or you're missing out.
All we have is right now. I'm as young today as I'll ever be.
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Old 07-17-2013   #30
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 20
MDignan - I'm looking for some new boating partners after moving back to these parts after 12 years in Colorado. Can't do this Saturday but would love to check out a lot of these runs locally and in the mountains that I have never done before. Hit me up!

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