Yep, that's right. Google was a great experience, and it was difficult to leave the Gmail team after spending the last four and a half years working on a product used by millions of people every day. But I decided I needed a change. Life had become too comfortable, and I felt like something important was missing. Every day I heard that voice nagging, the one telling me to go for it, to start a company, to do something big, to "free fall into chaos" and willingly enter a life of unpredictability. It was time. So I spent a month working feverishly to finish up the most important unfinished projects at work, and then gave my notice.
I immediately felt lighter. I knew it was the right decision.
I consolidated my belongings, which were strewn among a number of friends' houses in the Bay, put a bunch into storage, threw a ton of stuff out, donated over 100 pounds of clothes and shoes, sold both my cars, packed up my stuff, and hopped on a plane. (I actually booked my tickets a week or so before I gave notice, as further motivation to go through with my plan.)
I feel even lighter now. My last day in the Bay was pretty fantastic. I finished moving everything into storage, packing, and cleaning at around 6:30pm, which is the first time in recent memory I wasn't up most of the night before a long trip. As soon as I was done, I drove over to my favorite spot at Stanford and literally just sat down and thought about what I want to accomplish over the next year. It was amazingly helpful, and calming (apparently my Zen-ness has a ways to go, though - I was later up all night thinking about my trip). I had a panini and some hot chocolate on University Ave, then headed home and had some California wine with my housemate, and called it a night. A wonderful last day. I'm currently writing this post from a hotel room in Tokyo, and on Saturday I'm flying to Seoul, where I will begin my new life.
Why Seoul?, you may ask. Because it's an incredible city. The energy there is infectious. And it's rare to have the opportunity to just pick up and move halfway around the world without a job lined up or anything beyond even a hazy plan.
What will I do there? I eventually plan to start a company. But I'm looking forward to relaxing for a bit in the interim. I'll try to update this blog with my experiences as I go along.