Gulfport has been a very positive experience this time through. I think this is my … fourth or fifth business trip to the area.
My first time through, back in the winter of 2002, spring 2003, I was going through a very difficult transition — I was leaving the Defense Language Institute, Foreign Language Center, Presidio of Monterey, California, after 22 months and a class failure, left my first girlfriend not knowing if we would make it and then breaking up after getting to Mississippi, and the uncertainty of getting through communications school at Keesler Air Force Base. The weather was cold, I was treated as if I had just joined, despite being almost halfway through with my first enlistment, my then-girlfriend and I broke up and life wasn’t a lot of fun.
Fastforward 13 years and I’m a different man and this is a different place, but it’s not too different a place. I really just see it from a different perspective.
My focus has been my friend’s business and understanding it well enough to try and help him organize it. I’m much further behind where I thought I would be, and yet I’m not disappointed with where I am. My challenge is taking the business model I’ve helped him begun to streamline and start using it for myself.
The good news is I’ll be able to get my business license next week in Fort Worth without a problem, having already aligned my addresses and residencies and such so that everything should be legally in order. I have a great deal more to learn, but I recently completed this logo for the core service I’ll be selling: Incite Directory Listings Management, a service of Scroll Media, my company. (Or, will be my company again once I get the license in hand.)
I’ve been muddling through business ideas and ventures for years. I’ve come to realize in recent months that I don’t really like doing business. However, for the sake of the freedom I crave, I’ll fight my way into it so I might build myself an engine to propel me and my future endeavors as I wish them to be. My novels, voice work, design projects and other ventures require capital, and I abhor borrowing, mostly because I don’t feel comfortable operating as my own bookkeeper. Call that crazy or unwise as you like, but I know myself well enough to admit where I’m weak and embrace, further, what I’m good at.
In addition, I’ve focused on living daily in God, and not placing my hope on where my business ventures might go. Granted, I haven’t had any kind of meltdown, but it doesn’t mean my heart wasn’t hoping on something less sure than an everlasting God who made me with purpose and wants daily my total devotion and dependence.
So I focus my hope on him and I avoid daydreaming (as much as I can) about where my business may or may not take me if I do it correctly. I’m too prone to placing too much hope on a single shot instead of, like the great entrepreneurs, choosing a good business and leveraging it hard, over and over until the system finally starts working.
After all, the core concept of free-market capitalism is: Find a need, fill a need.
So I will head out from here Saturday and stay with an old linguist buddy in Baton Rouge, then have lunch in Hendersonville, Texas, with a different old linguist buddy, before crashing a few days in Fort Worth with an old friend from my active duty days in Virginia. While there I’ll get my residency and vehicle stuff complete and hopefully strike out for New Mexico on Thursday and Denver on Friday.
I’m actually unused to blogging, again. I once blogged five nights a week for four years straight — hit 1,000 posts and tapered off. It was a great season, and I’m wondering if I’m going to continue this one. I guess I will for now.
On a travel note, got to go to Ocean Springs this past weekend — a very quaint little gem of a southern art town. With tons of little restaurants and merch shops and art venues, it made for a really lovely Sunday.
On a silly note, I’ll leave you with my very mild encounter with a heron in Biloxi.