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26 year old Lost climber in search of spiritual guidance
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By Ryan Strong
From Golden, CO
Mar 25, 2013
Ryan sending Straight No Chaser at sundown. Photo:Ben Scheele.
Hey guys, I'm kind of stuck at some what of an early life chrisis and I'm throwing out my current situation in case any one out there has gone through a similar situation maybe they have some good input for me.

I am currently 1 month away from finishing my pipefitter (steamfitter) apprenticeship here in good ole Wisconsin. Once I finish my apprenticeship in theory I am a free man and have the option of taking my skills and applying them elsewhere in the country.

I just got out of a 2 year relationship with a girl that included plans to move to Boise , ID August 1st. Well that's not happening any more and now I'm confused on what to do and where to go with my life.

I'm 26 years old and have a decent amount of money stashed away in the bank. I also have a piggy bank that I have been stuffing cash away as a "dirtbag fund" .

I think as soon as July rolls around I will have enough money stored away I will be ok to not work for a 4 month block rolling from this summer into the end of fall.

I think come the end of fall I will be looking to settle down in Colorado and rent a place.

Here is where my problems begin.

1. I have a dog. Do I take the dog with me on this extended road trip? I know it won't be easy having a dog, but it also might not be easy with out one . I am planning on spending the month of September near or in the Yosemite valley. Obviously my dog won't be there with me , but my only option for a dog sitter would be to leave her here in Wisconsin with my mom.

Do I take the dog with me, give up on my hopes for Yosemite in sept and climb some where else? Do I bring the dog and then drop her off in Wisconsin 1/2 way through my trip?

2nd major delema : I own 2 vehicles currently. One is a 97' Subaru legacy
. Runs like a champ.

The other is a 86 Volkswagen Vanagon Westfalia . Also seems to run like a champ. But I am not sure if its the right vehicle to trust driving half way across the country.

I don't think owning 2 vehicles is going to work for me when I do move .

I do have the option of storing Subaru at my moms while I hit the road in the van. Once I am settled I could fly back to Milwaukee and pick up dog and Subaru.

Or do I sell both Subaru and Vanagon and spend a decent amount of money $8,000 ish and get myself something reliable and dirtbag friendly like a Honda Element.

Last thing if there are any climbers out there who happen to be Pipefitters members of the UA if you could email me I would like to ask you some questions about possibly making a career as a traveling pipefitter. Strongv03@gmail.com


I appreciate any helpful info any one can contribute

Sorry for the sob story just so many uncertainties and unanswered questions in my life right now. I had this great master plan with this girl and now it has all fallen apart .

Thanks

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By David Sahalie
From on the road again
Mar 25, 2013
Valley will be waaay too hot in July.

I would take the Westfalia and take the dog. You can talk to the dog. It is less weird than talking to yourself, and chicks dig dogs.

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By Liberty
Mar 25, 2013
Me
sorry about your loss. You need to sit down and take a deep breath, talk to a counselor, support group. Running away is not gonna solve anything.

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By Brendan Blanchard
From Strafford, NH
Mar 25, 2013
Obi Wan Ryobi - Darth Vader Crag, Rumney NH
Marla J wrote:
sorry about your loss. You need to sit down and take a deep breath, talk to a counselor, support group. Running away is not gonna solve anything.


+1, Also, to echo responses to every personal post on MP. You should probably seek some real help, this is the internet.

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By Old and Busted
From Centennial, CO
Mar 25, 2013
Stabby
Are you a welder fitter? Can you set yourself up with a rig? Willing to switch over to a merit shop?
If you want to travel, you usually work like 60 hour weeks and won't get out much other than to get in trouble.
We are starting to see a lot of mechanical work starting back up here in Denver. You could start out in 208, but once established I'd switch to merit if I were you. The union will stagnate you; not to mention keeping you broke on the bench half the year.

Leave the dog with your folks and do your trip.
Sell both vehicles and get a truck.

Also, best way to get over a broad is to hop on another one.

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By Woodchuck ATC
Mar 25, 2013
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008
You are a kid yet, got cash to spare, no house payments or property taxes to pay, no alimony or 'ex to deal with, you got it made! Head for a place where you can use your skills seasonally and have the rest of the year to go climb all you want, anywhere. Lots of opportunity out there for you!

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By jhn payne
Mar 25, 2013
"Ragin Cajun" 5.12c Jackson Falls, So Il.
Having been around the pipe trades most of my working career and being a 30 year climber I can offer this advise, try to get crossed trained in your union as a plumber as well as a fitter/welder that way when you travel you'll have a lot more opportunities for work. I think here in Il our local makes everyone get a state plumbing license. Fitting/welding jobs require industry which means cities of some size or perhaps refinery work. My long time climbing partner is a fitter/welder out of Ky and has traveled the west at various times, working/climbing, however he's now 56 and living out of motel rooms gets old, plus he owns a home in Ky, it can be done and its good wages but its a young mans game, which you are,so put plenty of your earnings aside for lay offs and rainy days and good luck.

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By Devin Fin
From DURANGO
Mar 25, 2013
dream canyon fun!
sell the subaru... VW+dog + free time after school/work and girl trouble! go go go don't even worry about a job.. if you got a skill you can get a job wen ever you have yer life sorted out. blow all yer money that you got saved on yer self, healing your mind body an soul. climb as hard as you can, meet new people, travel out west will always make you stronger ! life is long an yer almost 30 live the rest of yer 20's out.

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By Mark Vogel
From Lander, WY
Mar 25, 2013
Glad to hear you have learned your trade. Also glad to hear you're going to Yosemite. There are too many folks out there who have done neither!

Pick up your dog after 6 weeks in the valley, and she /he will still think you're the best!
Look me up if you ever pass through Lander, and we'll get on a route.

Best of Luck

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By Morgan Patterson
Administrator
Mar 25, 2013
Stoked...
Have you replaced the Head Gaskets on the Suby yet? How many miles you got on that whip?

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By MTKirk
From Billings, MT
Mar 25, 2013
Me on Supercrack
I read your whole post waiting to hear the bad part. I mean really, you are in your 20's, have a trade, have money saved, obviously a Mom who cares about you, and you are FREE!! Free to do whatever the hell you want! Someday you're going to look back on this point in your life and realize what an incredible opportunity it was, and hopefully you won't have blown it.

Finish your apprenticeship, pick a vehicle, load your shit, and hit the road!

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By EricSchmidt
Mar 25, 2013
So you broke up with a girl and that has totally ruined your life now? Please... it happens all the time.

You are 26, just graduated and have some money saved up. Go do whatever it is you want to do. First suggestion would be to buy a box of kleenex and stop crying for yourself.

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By Ed Wright
Mar 25, 2013
Magic Ed
Park the Subaru, hit the road with the van and the dog. Yosemite sucks--there's tons of other great places to climb where you won't have to deal with overbearing rules, regs and rangers. And I think you're going to find that one of the best was right in your back yard the whole time.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Mar 25, 2013
El Chorro
So you have a trade, extra money saved up, two vehicles, and a family that cares about you. That doesn't sound like a crisis to me.

If you know how to work on a VW, or know someone you can trust to give your Westy the OK, then sell the Subaru. If not, sell the Westy. You'll probably get good money for either.

Take all the money you have, invest half of it somewhere smart and accessible, put the rest in your checking account. Drive somewhere that you think you'd like, look for a part time job. Camp, climb, meet people.

If you don't like it there, quit your job and go somewhere else. Once you've found the place you want to stay, find a full time job and an apartment. Take the rest of the cash you have left over and invest it as well.

Work is not the worst thing in the world. You will meet people, and you will get a real idea of how it is to live in a place. That is the only way to tell if you like a place or not. And having a choice of where to live is better than most.

Or just look for a good job in a cool area. Start working, enjoy the paycheck, and save up for a few years. Then you'll have some professional experience and you'll be able to take 6-12 months off and probably still get a good job after your break.

In my experience a big stretch of unemployment just after you finish your education doesn't look good. If I see someone finish school/apprenticeship in the midwest, and then 6 months later he's in CO applying for a job, my first question is "what have you been doing for the last six months and are you running away from something?"

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By T Howes
From Bozeman, MT
Mar 25, 2013
Westfalia + Dog

take a chance, quit whining... you're going climbing for 4 months.

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By EricSchmidt
Mar 25, 2013
Shit talk about first world problems....

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By Old and Busted
From Centennial, CO
Mar 25, 2013
Stabby
TIC's world HQ is out here close to where I live. Best pipefitting outfit in the world if you want to get exposed to some serous shit and see the world.

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
Mar 25, 2013
Sell the Subaru, take the proceeds and have a 2.2 Suby engine swapped into the Westy (common mod and lots of places do the conversions).

Then you will have a reliable Westy, with power. Two things the VW powered version doesn't have.

Sept is too hot in the Valley. Shoot for Oct.

You have cash, freedom, and a valuable skillset...sounds pretty good at 26. I'd only say don't run your savings down too far before you start looking for work again. It's stressful enough to find good jobs without being broke.

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By Lyont72
From Foco, CO
Mar 25, 2013
Me
Ryan !
Dude I was talking to Taylor the other day and was saying you were going to ID and he was like no you’re not and I was like yes he is . . .
Then I find this on MP . . . Now My Thoughts
1: Leave the dog with Mom and get her later or, if she is a lab you could talk me into tacking her for you why you are in Yosemite. You could drop her off on your way out. But I am hoping to make part of the Yosemite trip with you this year! Karen loves dogs so were good . . .
2: Sell one of the cars . . . I would sell the Subaru and put that money into fixing up the VW to make a sweet dirtbag ride!
3: Get your ass out here to Colorado !!! You need a place to stay, I got room !!! You can kick it in FoCo until you find a job and a place of your own. Add to that I bet your brother would sack up and make the move as well!!!
Dude it sucks about your girl but now you are free !!!!!!! You got money !!!!!! You got a car . . . 2 of them !!!!! Take the road trip and find a new climbing chick . . . Just end up in CO at the end of it all.
P.S. For your spiritual guidance I have a PBR!

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By Scott M. McNamara
From Tucson, Arizona
Mar 25, 2013
One Way Sunset
You can do---whatever pleases you.

Tell yourself---a story about yourself. Do you like the story? Do you like how it ends?

Experimentation is good. It does not have to be perfect the first time. It will not be perfect the first time.

You may make mistakes. That is ok. Everyone does.

You may find you do not like what your are doing. Change it.

You may wish to change course completely. That is ok.

Generally, those things that expand our knowledge, our love and our connectedness are good.

Hard work and trying hard are part of it.

Part of it may be doing things you do not like or that are scary.

Don't be too safe.

Listening to others (including me) is good, listening to yourself is much better.

Have fun. It should be a part of it.

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By Ian Stewart
Mar 25, 2013
You're 26, single, and one month away from being out of school with two cars and a "decent amount of money" that will allow you to road trip around the country for 4 months.

Many people on this site would envy your situation.

I'd sell the Subie and put that money into the van. As for the dog, unfortunately I'd have to say leave him at home. Even if 90% of the time you'll be in dog-friendly situations, that remaining 10% will be a real hassle.

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By Olivia Claire
Mar 25, 2013
Marshall's Madness on TR, Seneca Rocks
I've got a good friend in IL who splits her online browsing between looking for a Subaru on Craigslist and finding creative ideas for living out of Westies. If you're interested in selling either, send me a PM and I'll give your info to her! She's been in the market for a new car for a few months.

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By J Q
Mar 25, 2013
Me again!
Some spiritual guidance: Shoot the dog, burn the vans, and start a cult. You could even classify it as a religion and post up a way to join on this site. I would join. I want every fucking religious holiday known to climbers, especially the all so sacred "sentember" rituals where the proj goes down and the gnar gets the send!


There is your spiritual guidance, now pony up and do the leg work. The MP community will appreciate.

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By Liberty
Mar 25, 2013
Me
Lyont72 wrote:
Ryan ! Dude I was talking to Taylor the other day and was saying you were going to ID and he was like no you’re not and I was like yes he is . . . Then I find this on MP . . . Now My Thoughts 1: Leave the dog with Mom and get her later or, if she is a lab you could talk me into tacking her for you why you are in Yosemite. You could drop her off on your way out. But I am hoping to make part of the Yosemite trip with you this year! Karen loves dogs so were good . . . 2: Sell one of the cars . . . I would sell the Subaru and put that money into fixing up the VW to make a sweet dirtbag ride! 3: Get your ass out here to Colorado !!! You need a place to stay, I got room !!! You can kick it in FoCo until you find a job and a place of your own. Add to that I bet your brother would sack up and make the move as well!!! Dude it sucks about your girl but now you are free !!!!!!! You got money !!!!!! You got a car . . . 2 of them !!!!! Take the road trip and find a new climbing chick . . . Just end up in CO at the end of it all. P.S. For your spiritual guidance I have a PBR!

Palease! Now let's discuss the guy' s bowel habits... Do we have to bring all the dirty laundry out ? All the advice you give him is something you would do. You all dont know what he wants and needs in life. Telling someone to go climb and blow away cash isnt a brain surgery! He is obviously grieving the loss of a loved one and decided to post here for whatever reason...maybe to justify something...i dont know neither do you all. Its nice to just talk but walking in his shoes is not the same.

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By Joe De Luca
From yucca valley
Mar 25, 2013
railroad gin v0 FA. JOE DE LUCA
I went through the same thing. I ran from my broken heart and spent 13 months climbing all over the place. However, climbing, drugs, and booze did not fix my broken heart. It just turned me into a super bold strong climber, but I still had to deal with the broken heart. Time will heal all and never look back. Only look forward all will be good, just keep your smile and your good.

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By Liberty
Mar 25, 2013
Me
Joe De Luca wrote:
I went through the same thing and i ran from my broken hart and spent 13 months climbing all over the place but climbing drugs and booze did not fix my broken hart,I just was a supper bold strong climber but had to still dill with the broken hart. time will hill all and never look back only look forward all will be good just keep your smile and your good.

sounds like a country song for some reason....

FLAG


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