But I Want To Have My Cake And Eat It Too

Taking a break while hiking on Oahu

Situation: I want to be in two places at once.
I recently watched the movie Sweet Home Alabama and could relate to Melanie when her dad said, “You can’t ride two horses with one ass, sugarbean.” While I’m not involved in a love triangle, I’m very indecisive about choosing a place to live. I want to have the tropical destination but with cheap prices and free rent. I want my friends and family in one place. I just want to have my cake and eat it too! After being at home for a while it was time to move on. I have a road trip planned in July so essentially needed plans for the next six months. I weighed several options seriously. For a short time, I really thought I was moving to Portland. But in the end it came down to two places: Columbia, SC (where I was living before my RTW trip) and Hawaii. I made plans for Hawaii actually- found a ridiculous deal on a flight that would allow me to stop in San Francisco for a few days to see friends, set up a living arrangement, and even told my parents. It sounded too good to be true. And then I found out that I had a free living situation in Columbia and a house-sitting gig for part of the time if I wanted it. I didn’t really want to go back in Columbia at this point in my life but free rent is such a tough thing to turn down. I ached over this decision for days but here’s what it came down to.

More Fun or More Money
While Hawaii is expensive, really it’s food and rent I have to worry about. All of the outdoor activities I want to participate in are completely free. My entertainment budget could be kept at a minimum. I love the hiking and running trails there, not to mention swimming and snorkeling! Hawaii wins the Fun vote, hands down.

If I go to Hawaii, I really won’t save much at all. That’s not a bad exchange for five months in an amazing locale but it will have longer term effects. After my cross-country road trip this summer, I would definitely have to stay put for a while. If I go to South Carolina, I should be able to sock away funds, which means that after my cross-country road trip I should have a little extra left over.  And this little extra could then put me on a plane towards the end of the year to Kenya.

After grappling for days and seeking advice from several people, I canceled my living arrangements in Hawaii. Free rent trumps fun for now. Hawaii may make a reappearance in 2012. I know my way around and can always go back. The idea of feeling trapped and broke at the end of this year just didn’t sound quite as appealing once I mulled it over.

Did I make the right choice? Only time will tell.

18 thoughts on “But I Want To Have My Cake And Eat It Too

    • (Tail between my legs). Actually I chose money over fun at the moment… assuming I find a job soon. But actually I think it will end up being a pretty good time here so I can’t complain :)

  • Free rent is seriously hard to pass up, and six months isn’t too bad. I think it’s a good call.

    I actually left the country because I couldn’t decide where to live after one living situation fell through, but instead of mulling over two places, I just didn’t want to stay anywhere at all, so the nomadic life beckoned. Hawaii sounds great, though!

  • One of my close friends just announced today that she quit her job in NYC and is also moving back home to her parents’ house in Columbia. Returning to the South, FTW! (I’m jealous. I want to be back there.)

  • That indeed was a tough decision.. I can’t say whether you made the right one or now, but I guess you should feel fortunate that these are the types of decisions you face in today’s world.

    I’ll miss you in Hawaii, but I’ll be back in 2012 (just in time for apocalypse. Really, what better place to spend it?)

    • “I can’t say whether you made the right one…” Well that’s encouraging! Haha, we would’ve missed each other anyways b/c aren’t you going to Maui? I agree- apocalypse in Hawaii would be so super sweet! Sounds like a plan.

  • I know this was a tough decision for you! In the end it’s a choice and you’re gonna have great things coming your way because you’re choosing to save money to have a great experience later in the year. No right or wrong, just different consequences of your choice.

    Just be sure you do make it to Hawaii for that adventure at some point :-)

    Who knows…maybe I’ll be home by the time you start your road trip and we can connect. I’m sure where we’ll eventually meet will be a surprise to both of us :-)

    • Yes, and I’m sorry you had to listen about it! But I really appreciate being able to bounce my thoughts off of you. Don’t you worry- I’ll be back to Hawaii, I’m already recruiting people to go. ps Macarons would make for good road trip junk food I do believe…

      • No apologies! Glad we talk outside of our blogs and twitter! Was and am here to support whichever way you decided.

        Sadly you can’t pop countless macarons at once like chips, M&Ms or the like – though I probably make it sound that way- but they are a must for any joint travels we may have!

  • ““You can’t ride two horses with one ass, sugarbean.””

    Oh but you can! Well at least that’s how I feel going back and forth in between the U.S. and Chile.

    I think there’s always a way to make it work if you really want to try. What is the sacrifice for me spending my time half and half in both countries? That I’m neither here nor there. My friends in Chile get married and have babies while I’m gone and my friends int he U.S. do the same. Life waits for no one. But it’s all good, I love that I get to see most of the people I care about regularly.

  • Decisions like that can be hard and annoying to make. But there will always be other changes to travel to the other destination. I have been planning to make a long trip again this year, but can’t choose between all the options, and there are way more then just 2 :) Its a bit of a s luxury problem really, the more choices you get the harder it seems to pick one.

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