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And now for something completely different…

Many thanks to any regular readers out there who have been patient with my month-long absence!! I assure you postings should return to some modicum of regularity moving forward. This month has been a hectic one, diving back into my 3rd semester of my MBA program (virtually HALFWAY DONE!!!) as well as surviving 2 major events that I coordinated at work– Días de Tecnología, day-long technical training events for ~380 Texas Instruments fans in Mexico City and Guadalajara. We were also honored with a visit from friend Emily who thus far wins the “longest distance traveled” award from John & Julie’s B&B, as she currently resides in Germany.

My pal Paul Westbrook at the TI booth during my first Mexico tradeshow, MexEEdev.

My pal Paul Westbrook at the TI booth during my first Mexico tradeshow, MexEEdev.

Anyway, the biggest news in my life right now is that this week marks the end of my employment with Texas Instruments, the company I have worked for since the summer of 1998. I started as an intern for 3 summers in Houston, joined their sales training program in Dallas after college, spent 4 years in technical sales in Boston, and another 2 in the Washington DC area. I thought that would be the end of it when we headed down to Mexico City last year, but conveniently someone had just left the Marketing/University Programs position for TI Mexico. 

Yes, I am a dork, but yes, this is my favorite TI demo: an LCD powered off of grapes.

Yes, I am a dork, but yes, this is my favorite TI demo: an LCD powered off of grapes.

And so it came about that last fall I joined a great team of 7 guys located in 4 cities across Mexico, with a patient boss who was willing to take a risk that I might be able to learn Spanish faster than someone new could learn the 8 zillion acronyms & intricacies of TI! :) Though I certainly still have room to grow on the Spanish, I will say that I have progressed from feeling a flash terror whenever the phone in my office would ring, to being able to have a 3-hour long meeting in Spanish at a university discussing how they might use TI products in their engineering curriculum. (I will admit to getting a bit lost during a biomedical lab tour though…)

A workshop I coordinated in Mexico City, taught by our star trainer extraordinaire, Ken Schachter.

A workshop I coordinated in Mexico City, taught by our star trainer extraordinaire, Ken Schachter.

The experience working for TI in another country and another language has been both fun & challenging, enlightening & frustrating, all mixed together. At this point, however, John & I have about one more year left in Mexico. After much debate, I decided that this is my best (and probably only!) chance to take a break, enjoy Mexico, and figure out what it is that I want to do when I grow up.  The fact that this MBA is coming out of my own pocket is inspiring me to actually take some time & try to get something out of it, vs. the panicked reading/homework-doing/paper-writing the night before class every other week to date.

Here's lunchtime at our Día de Tecnología 2 weeks ago in DF... Let's play Where's Waldo... Can you spot me???

Here's lunchtime at our Día de Tecnología 2 weeks ago in DF... Let's play Where's Waldo... Can you spot me???

I’m really interested in starting my own business, and while I don’t know yet what that might be, I DO know that I need some time to really investigate it. TI has been a fantastic place to work & I truly hope to stay in contact with the many amazing people I’ve met there. After 11 years there, however, I am ready for a change! I feel amazingly lucky to have this opportunity to hit the reset button, not to mention a husband who’s totally supportive (as long as he sees an uptick in tasty dinners prepared by yours truly, which I suppose is only fair). ;)

Me with Clementina, one of the good friends I met in this role, and her esteemed colleagues from CINVESTAV!

Me with Clementina, one of the good friends I met in this role, and her esteemed colleagues from CINVESTAV!

So anyway, expect the occasional brainstorming / introspection / call-for-ideas as I begin this year-long odyssey here in Mexico City. Please feel free to offer any proactive hot tips & insights!! I have so many things I want to do/work on, I am certain that next summer will be here way before I expect it… For those of you who know me, it is time to make a new Excel spreadsheet!!!

In the trendy bright-green shirts, you'll find the proud TI Mexico sales team, accompanied by some other TIers who visited for the Tech Day events 2 wks ago.

In the trendy bright-green shirts, you'll find the proud TI Mexico sales team, accompanied by some other TIers who visited for the Tech Day events 2 wks ago.

And for those of you who are like “what happened to the ‘Mexico’ part of your Mexico blog?”, here is a smattering of the posts I am delinquent on:

  • John’s trip to a luxury house in Ixtapa (while I had MBA class, boo)
  • DF activities for when the parents visit!
  • More Lucha Libre trips!!
  • Views from the top of the Torre Mayor in downtown DF
  • BFF Kim visits from Boston!
  • San Miguel de Allende
  • Guanajuato (go now!)
  • Anniversary trip to Huatulco, on the Oaxacan coast
  • Karaoke night out at Escaparate in Polanco
  • Julie finally goes to the pyramids (Teotihuacan)
  • How to become a luchador: an interview with El Matador
  • Navigating the Mexico City airport

So yes, more to come, honest! Thanks for sticking with me during my month of near-radio silence, and cheers to John for filling in with his Yaxchilan posts. Off to get some sleep in preparation for my waning hours as a TIer…. ;)

And here is the metaphorical mountain I am ready to climb to figure out my new career path!! Please be ready with bottles of water along the way... ;)

And here is the metaphorical mountain I am ready to climb to figure out my new career path!! Please be ready with bottles of water along the way... ;)

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5 Comments on “And now for something completely different…”

  1. #1 John
    on Jun 30th, 2009 at 7:22 am

    How exciting! What a great plan, Julie. Now’s the time to dream big. It’s truly never too late to work out “what you want to be when you grow up” but it gets a lot harder to implement as you get older as I can attest. I’m still working on my plan!

  2. #2 Alice
    on Jun 30th, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Presentations in spanish–amazing! Well, now you are officially a part of our ladies of leisure club, and I think you will find the transition quite easy. We play tourist, eat, and indulge while the hubbies are hard at work :)

  3. #3 Michael Hemenway
    on Jun 30th, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    Julie,

    This is my first time writing, after finding your blog this past weekend. Your posts and information on traveling and living as a Gringo here in Mexico is incredibly insightful and humorous. I too am living here, having transplanted myself from NC almost a month ago. My fiance’ is Mexican and after she moved back 6 months ago, I followed here here in hopes of finding a life outside of the US.

    I am blogging online too with photos and such, so feel free to have a gander. My address:

    http://michaelp711.blogspot.com/

    Good to hear your going to be posting full time again. My fiance’ and I had a few laughs at the insights into life here, so we are looking forward to more.

    I’m waiting to hear back from the US Embassy about a job I have applied for there, and in hopes I’ll be able to stay longer than my 180 day visa allows for now. So…for now, have a good evening and take care.

    Michael

  4. #4 Mike J
    on Jul 1st, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    Congratulations Julie. It is hard to believe it has been a year already. Hopefully, the next year will be even better than the first one.

    Keep us updated.

    Mike

  5. #5 American Mommy in Mexico
    on Jul 3rd, 2009 at 7:52 am

    Sounds very exciting. You are both brave and wise! Good Luck!

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