coming and going

by rantywoman

I read an article recently where a journalist compared the amount of savings a hypothetical forty-year-old female making 70k would accrue if she relocated from pricy California to a “flyover” state. The savings were not all that much until the writer took into account home ownership, which is possible for middle-income earners in the middle of the country but not on the coasts. Then the savings became significant (all of which I explained to my former roommate, who is now reaping the benefits of my advice… but I digress).

My only quibble with the article is the assumption that this hypothetical woman will continue to make 70k outside of California. But even if she (or I) were making 50k, the savings can still be significant, especially, in my case, if I take into account the better pension here and the fact that I would get social security again (government workers don’t in California).

But here’s the rub. Thus far, the jobs at my former organization here paying 70k are being opened to internal applicants only. So I’ve been applying to jobs paying around 40-50k to get back in, but, as I’ve written, I’m not getting them (and now I hear the last one went to an external candidate– not internal– so there won’t be a new opening).

There are some appealing part-time jobs on Craigslist, but I don’t get a response there. Nor do I get responses from other government jobs I apply for. So I recently applied for an entry-level job in the private sector at a popular company where I have a friend of a friend. It probably pays 30-40k, and they probably prefer a newly-minted college grad. I couldn’t bring myself to apply to a low-paying, full-time public service job that never allowed for two days off together in a week, but I applied for a state job paying in the low 40s and the small-town job that pays well.

It will be ironic if I move to the small town. Since my roommate never leaves the apartment, whereas I take advantage of this city quite a bit, it seems like he’d be a better fit there. On the other hand, as I approach my mid-forties, I assume I’m heading for the social scrap heap, so why not?

The promotion I was offered in L.A., the one paying nearly six figures, is still open, and it’s certainly tempting at this point. But it would mean twelve-hour days and a hairy commute.

Feeling glum. It seems there’s no way to win.