Things I thought I'd have by now (besides a job)
Lately it has been bothering me that I've been putting a lot of things off, for lack of what a friend mine calls a Real Job(^TM).
Most of the time I don't mind, but watching everyone else get on with their lives makes me wonder if I would be happier if some of these things could be improved with or without a new job?
1. A better place to live
Our current rental is affordable, has parking and laundry and some other amenities. We have a lot of space, and the location makes it a relatively painless commute to lab.
However, it is not perfect, and we never intended to stay here this long. The main reason we've stayed is that the rent has not gone up, and Mr. PhD and I both really hate moving.
(Oh yeah and that part where we never know if we'll have jobs and might have to move to some other part of the country where we can at least be employed)
2. A new car
My car is getting old. It's not running as well as it used to, which is my main complaint. I hate being the person who can't accelerate.
And it has scratches and small dents here and there, but overall it will probably be okay for a few more years.
The last couple of years, though, I've thought it would be nice to get a hybrid. In fact, I've had to watch several friends get hybrids and try to pretend like I'm happy for them. Hmph.
3. Actual furniture
This kind of goes with "better place to live".
I really hate shopping for this kind of thing. Somehow I never seem to have the dimensions right, or the color ends up being wrong, etc. It's a lot of back-and-forth and by then the thing I wanted is not on sale anymore, or the only thing I like is wayyyyy too expensive.
Or as has happened before, I finally get something, and THEN we have to move. And then we realize it looks totally wrong (or doesn't fit) in the new place.
4. A vacation
There never seems to be time.
When there is time to go, there is not enough time to get a flight anywhere.
When there are sales on flights, I can't go.
Things are always up in the air, or experiments are going and need to be babysat on a daily basis. See also #5.
Or I end up using my "vacation" to do things I don't want to do, like attending other people's weddings or baby showers or funerals, or just visiting my parents to make sure they haven't killed each other (yet).
5. Help in the lab
Okay, so I have a student working with me a few days a week, but it's not really the same as having, you know, an actual technician.
I really thought that by now, even as a postdoc, I would have at least a partial share of a professional tech (sort of like how the PIs often share parts of admins) to help take care of stuff if I do go out of town or get sick.
See under "You should really invest: Oh, nevermind."