I have been itching to play soccer for months now. The Euro 2012 Championship that is currently ongoing has hardly satisfied my hunger to get out there on the field and run up and down kicking a white ball around the grass trying to get it into the back of a net. But as I have watched soccer the past few weeks – the England game with the English, the Germany game with some Germans, and the Portugal game with my friend Sergio from Portugal – I am reminded of a time in 2002 during the World Cup in South Korea and Japan, when I was in college, where I had a similar experience. Then, I was able to watch Nigeria play with the Nigerians, the USA play with fellow Americans, and watch the pride of the Koreans as the team advanced far into the Cup on their home turf. There is no other sporting or bonding experience than a close soccer game, except perhaps getting out there and playing the beautiful game yourself.
I have been in California for over a year now. It’s hard to believe. I have tried to hang on to my New York identity as long as possible, but New York is starting to seem like a more distant memory – both for me personally and for those there that still know me. I moved to the west coast with a plan that I am starting to rethink now that circumstances have changed. Facts have changed for both my job and with my extended family situation, causing me to recently think of whether the tentative long-term plan continues to make sense. This is not to mention the growing cost of living in the area and crumbling public school system, which further bolsters a rethinking of a long-term plan. But that is the why – what and where to next is always the question. My family is growing and I need to do what makes the most sense for all of us to provide certainty and stability and can’t just be the guy that scratches the itch for a change every few years. This is the challenge; this is what makes it interesting.