I was young, confused, interested in computers, and wanted to be successful. There you had it, I was a California boy who was thought to want to attend a California university. I had just graduated high school and the choices were clear, UC Berkeley, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara, UC San Francisco, Cal Poly, Chico State, Humboldt State? All the schools seemed to make sense, to be an easy snap decision I could make with no problems.
But what if, just what if I took a different route, a route based on the unknown, based on pure intuition? At the time I was working on code with other Russians I knew over the internet and had become somewhat of a computer expert at 17 years old. I was told, “Utah, you must come to the University of Utah in Salt Lake, the computer science program is great!”
Being young and naive, I had no idea what I wanted in life, no idea about people, no idea about anything. I was told by so many people, “There are a bunch of Mormon extremists over there and they are going to convert you!” At the time, I didn’t know what a Mormon was but I had seen Jehovah’s witnesses and they always seemed like such nice people, what harm could they possibly be?
Anyhow, I ended up skipping out on California, of all the fun I could have had, of all the excitement, I ended up going to University of Utah of all places for the computer science program. I ended up having great experiences there but I just wanted to point out. Where would I be, what would be life be like if I had gone to Chico State or UC Santa Barbara? With just the smallest simple decision, the entire course of my life would be different. People I know, places I have seen, experiences I have had, they would all be different.
A year after graduation I was working at a high paying Software Engineering position. However, at the time I really wanted to leave Utah as I felt like it was a really bizarre and strange place I didn’t like anymore after being out of college for a while. I ended up becoming good friends with an individual who was 10 years older than me. This friend was a business owner and had a lot of experience, he ended up getting me my eventual job in San Diego, but, before this, I had the opportunity to move to a number of different cities…
Would it be Minneapolis, Minnesota? (Ew the cold) Gainesville, Florida? (bah, the Alligators), Boise, Idaho? (I am trying to get out of Utah remember, don’t want to go to almost the exact same type of place). So what did I do? I choose where the sunshine is warm year round and the grass is always greener in the sunshine state of California, San Diego.
I am sure glad I made that decision. But what I want to point out to the readers is possibility, and choices. Where would you be in life if you made one small decision, or large decision, just a little bit differently? Perhaps if I moved to Idaho I would be milking cows now, or if I moved to Florida I would be chasing Alligators through the swamps.
So, before you make any decision, always think about the consequences, it only takes the smallest choice, to make a huge difference and change the future course of your life forever!
Author: Justin Hansen