While I’m sure that it’s not of interest to the vast majority of readers coming from Gentoo Universe, I’m sure that some of you won’t mind some updates on my personal situation, at least to help you understand my current availability and what you can ask me to do for you, realistically.
First of all, I’m not currently in the USA — since I didn’t have a work visa, my stay was always supposed to be limited to three months at a time. The three months expired in early December, so before the expiration I traveled back to Europe — in particular to the bureaucracy of Italy and to the swamp of Venice; you can guess I don’t really like my motherland.
I’m not planning at this point to go back to the US anytime soon. Among other reasons, during 2012 I spent over six months there, and they have been very clear the last time I entered: I’m not welcome back right away — a few months would be enough, but that also means that the line of work I started back in February last year couldn’t proceed properly. While the original plan was for me to get an office in, or nearby, London, I haven’t seen any progress for said plan, which meant I went back to my old freelancing. I suppose this currently puts me in a consulting capacity more than anything.
Unfortunately, as you can guess, after a hiatus of a full year, most of my customers found already someone else to take care of them, and I’m currently only following one last customer in their project — for something they paid already for, which means that there isn’t any money to be made there. I am already trying to get a new position, this time as a full-time employee, as the life of a freelancer (in Italy!) really made me long for more stability. For the moment I have no certain news for my future employment, but you can probably guess that, in the case I do accept a full-time position, the time I have to spend on Gentoo is likely going to be reduced, unless said position requires me to use Gentoo — and I wouldn’t bet on that if I was you.
Furthermore I do expect that, whatever position I’m going to accept next, I’m going to move out of Italy — the political scene in Italy has never been good, but it reached my limit with the current populist promises from both sides of the aisles, and from the small challengers alike; and my freelancing experience makes me wonder how on earth it’s possible that only one (small) party is actually trying to fight the crisis and increase productivity … but this all is for a different time. Anyway, wherever am I going to end up (I’m aiming for one of the few English-speaking countries in Europe), it’s going to take a while for me to settle down (find a place to live, get it so that it’s half-decently convenient to me, etc.), which is going to eat away some of the time I spend on Gentoo.
Time is being eaten away already to be honest. Among other things, here at home I’ve got a bunch of paperwork to take care of: not only the general taxes that need to be paid and accounted for, but the bank took some of my time just to make sure I have money to cover for the expenses (during the year I accrued some debts here in Italy, as I was living off the American account), and so on. I’m also trying to reduce the expenses as much as it’s possible for me. Most of the hardware I had before, anyway, has been dropped already, back in June when the original plan was for me to get an H1B visa and jump out of here, so it’s less bothersome that it can seem at first.
The one thing that really bothers me the most is that since last year I’ve been feeling like wherever I am, I’m “borrowing” my space — it’s not something I like. While some people, such as Luca, feel comfortable with just carrying their things in a suitcase, and as long as they have a place to sleep and wash their clothes they are happy, I’ve always been quite the sedentary guy: I like having my space, personalized for my needs and so on. Even now back at home I don’t feel entirely stable because I do not know how long I’m going to stay here.
I’m afraid I have overindulged during the months in the US, relying too much on the promises made then. Hopefully, I’ll come out of the recent mess on my feet, and possibly with a less foul mood than I have been having recently.