Ming the Mechanic:
Lightning

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Lightning2003-08-07 17:04
18 comments
picture by Flemming Funch

Finally some break in the heat wave here. Clouds started forming, suddenly there was a weird dust storm, and then thunder and lightning and it started raining. I hope it continues.

And then I had a hit of lightning myself today. A rather unwanted economic one. The company that has been my most reliable and stable source of income for the past several years has decided to cut down my contract. They haven't been doing as well as they used to, have been losing money actually, and I haven't been doing much of importance for them recently. So there goes $4000 per month. Not exactly a good time for us. What is left is barely enough to survive on, and not really enough for much new furniture or a car or that kind of details.

But maybe it is a great thing. Or maybe it will seem like it when looking back in a few months. The slates are being wiped clear, and I'll have to find new things to do, make new contacts, reinvent myself. Sometimes that doesn't happen without being forced into it. Most of us change rather reluctantly.

It is sort of weird how our current situation has a number of parallels to how we moved to the U.S. 18 years ago. I would really have preferred that I had it all together, and everything just was perfectly comfortable and smooth and carefully planned, but I guess that isn't to be. Most adventures aren't smooth and predictable, or they wouldn't be adventures.

In 1985 I moved from Copenhagen to Los Angeles with my wife and 1.5 year old daughter. I did a quick recogniscance trip first, to learn how things worked and to get a job, but then we just shipped the most essential things and sold or gave away the rest, bought a ticket and left. The exchange rates between Kroner and Dollars were terrible. The money we brought went as far as buying a used car and moving into a little furnished apartment, and surviving for a month. The job I had arranged was as a sales person in a computer store. But after the first month they had to let me go, because they didn't know how to pay me. I was an illegal alien, and hadn't learned yet that that was no problem at all at the time in L.A. One could just go and sign up for a social security number and bank account and driver's license, and then one would look like an American. But I found out too late, and we basically were there, in a foreign country, not really knowing anybody, having run out of money, and no job, and it started looking a bit desperate.

What happened at that time was that I gave up, realized that my planning wasn't enough, and gave myself over to fate. What I actually did was that I walked around and applied for a lot of jobs that I wouldn't otherwise have considered. I was willing to take anything. After a lot of walking around in the hot sun, going for a lot of interviews, I finally got an offer. It was a $6/hr data entry clerk job. I was going to type in names from a phone book. Which I did for a few days, my eyes turning all square.

But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise. It turned out that I worked for the managing partner of the largest medical group in Southern California, and we actually hit it off really well, and he quickly realized that I wasn't really supposed to do data entry. Rather quickly I was doing financial modeling and developing their information system, designing the whole computer system for a sister company, and before long I was making $100K/year and managing big long-term projects with a bunch of people working with and for me. And I had wonderful and inspiring experiences with some great people.

The point is, it went through a certain cycle of making careful plans, having them all fall apart unexpectedly, starting over and following some kind of desperate intuition, and things ending up succeeding way beyond my expectations, in ways I couldn't have imagined. The problem is, I would never quite volunteer for such a thing, or advice anybody to aim for doing it that way. Even though I know well that it sometimes is necessary for life to treat you that way.

And now, we're in a foreign country where everything is new and different and difficult. We sold and gave away all of our stuff, and shipped some essentials. The exchange rate (this time between dollars and euros) is really bad, so we don't get much for our money. All of it gets used up really quickly for renting house, cars, etc. And then I lose the job I was counting on for security. And then what?

There are other odd little parallels. On the first recognisance trip to the U.S. I smashed up the rental car, and had stupidly declined the insurance and ended up owing the rental company a lot of money. This time the rental car broke down, and despite that I opted for all the insurance, the company somehow has decided that it is all my fault and I ought to pay for the repairs, and for the trouble they have of having two cars 1500km from where they belong. I don't agree with them at all this time, but it is a bit of a deja vu.

Anyway, more later on my search for what needs to happen next. Don't worry. Things generally work out.


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18 comments

7 Aug 2003 @ 17:40 by bushman : :}
I do my best work, flying by the seat of my pants. Scary, but more full filling to the purpose of life, whatever that is, lol.  


7 Aug 2003 @ 18:52 by Roland Tanglao @204.244.71.28 : i feel your pain
i know things will work out! if i can help in any way, you know where you can reach me!  


7 Aug 2003 @ 22:16 by Danny Caudillo @66.74.78.92 : Life is My Bitch!!!
Hey Flemming, sorry to hear about the troubles, but of all people, you will make it out of this fine. Who you are, is one that can not fail. I have never seen you fail, and you never will, keep your head up.  


7 Aug 2003 @ 23:27 by Chris Corrigan @154.5.94.60 : Living in Open Space
Ah...Life in Open Space.

Whoever comes are the right people.
Whatever happens is the only thing that could have.
When it starts is the right time.
When it's over, it's over.

And the all important law of Two Feet: If you find yourself in a place where you are neither learning or contributing, go somewhere where you can.

Good luck Ming!  



8 Aug 2003 @ 02:51 by vaxen : Yah...
planet Uranus doing its' thing. I sympathize with you and your family, flemming, but also know that out of this you will undoubtedly end up stronger and in a much better position. After all something called you to leave this Grand Ol Opery called the United States! Good luck bro...we'll be rooting for you.

{http://www.accessnewage.com/}  



8 Aug 2003 @ 06:39 by istvan : Self sufficiency
Perhaps this move and of the loss of income will move you toward more self sufficiency, by developing some of your webdomains you own and generate some income as your own imstead of working for companies.
Perhaps NCN members can support you, needing help with their projects.
I need someone to develop some websites that i am sure would generate income for examle.
I wiuld be glad to share the profits from them, first of all with you, or anyone else who could help with the software.
As many businesses crumbling around the world we have to increasingly rely om our projects and skills that work.  



8 Aug 2003 @ 07:02 by ming : Life
Thanks guys! Yes, I resonate with all of your comments. Nothing is really safe or stable in life. But if one can flow with what happens, and hear the signals that announce that it is time to move on to something new, and one actually moves, rather than just struggling to stay the same - then things generally work out and learning takes place. It is not always pleasant at all points of the journey, but the journey is a good one.  


8 Aug 2003 @ 13:24 by allan karl @67.125.40.48 : Adventure, Overland Travel & Ming
Hey ming - love your saga. and i just blogged a bit about your post from a few days back:

http://radio.weblogs.com/0108247/2003/08/08.html#a431

enjoy  



8 Aug 2003 @ 13:46 by sindy : flow
things does have its way in working and it will work out for the best dearest Flemming.. wishing you all the best *hugs*  


8 Aug 2003 @ 19:10 by Jennifer Caudillo @66.74.78.92 : hmmm...
I would give you all poems and tell you how you wont fail like all the others but it really is just plain in your face... The deja vu stands as something great for you, in that it will come again in the end when everythings fine... enjoy your experience... love you all... ((Marie right me back..hehehe)))  


8 Aug 2003 @ 20:26 by Ge Zi @24.126.196.158 : looking back
Hi you guys,
maybe there is the element of standing with the back against a wall that makes the chance for a big turn - that's the part where we kinda give up control and actually let somebody in to help - however that may be called: the creator, higher self, thetan or whatever.
And the nice thing is actually looking back - it's so funny thinking of sharing with Max a burger for newyears because that was all we could afford. It was surely not funny at that time at Wendy's but then again it's all a matter of viewpoint, right?
gotta have that coffee not too far in the future.
Gunter

ps: so - do you guys understand the natives?  



8 Aug 2003 @ 21:12 by Jon Husband @209.148.231.39 : Heart
Thank you, Flemming, for sharing so openly who and how you are with us. As chris notes, I think you are a great living example of the law of two feet - yours are taking you to where you contribute. You already are - thank goodness there is now this thing we now as the web - I think this will be an example of it being a web of life, for you and your family.

Alors...c'est la vie - et je suis certain que la vie va vous entourer et proteger, va vous offrir des horizons plus vaste que l'on peut imaginer dans le moment qu'elle semble tentative, fragile et dangereuse.

Bonne chance, et je vous prie d'accepter sincerement mes ondes telepathique de support.  



8 Aug 2003 @ 22:19 by Laura @66.74.78.92 : Change
Change! My exprience is that you first must go through one hell of a storm. Once the storm calms the sun shines brightly. Hang in there and barrel on forward, your sunny day awaits you.  


9 Aug 2003 @ 00:50 by waalstraat : Ming
Being an Artist, I have been hit with financial and stressful calamities over and over again...the lesson I have taken away from that, is that recovery, and re-creation is acquired one step at a time. When you look at the total picture it often looks way too bleak...but when you dissolve that, surrender to the situation, and do what you did in your LA adventure, the vicissitudes open up and you start materializing your new re-birth, which is what you wished to do in the first place. Innervating oneself takes unexpected turns.
I can tell you know all this, and like myself have lived it before, so I am just reinforcing you with the one step at a time to new exisistential heights bit.
I don't know if this will be of any help but one of the techniques I have learned to use in parallel situations, is to sit down and write what I will do in the worst case scenario. Most of the time what I have come up with is 3 or 4 things I would hate to do, but which demonstrate to me that not all is ended, and the situation is viable. Somehow seeing those last desperate steps oxygenates the whole situation for me, helps me center, and envelopes me in the calm I need to pursue the step-by-step approach.
I was very touched a few weeks ago when you mentioned the fact that you sort have neglected the spiritual side of yourself in terms of spiritual practice. Well my friend as you know there is no seperation of spiritual and material...here's you chance for meditation in action through the practice of minute by minute mindfulness...
With the warmest regards, and blessing for you and your family
I remain your unsolicited friend,
Bernard  



11 Aug 2003 @ 01:14 by waalstraat : My Friend
Aum mani padme hum, Aum mani padme hum, Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum,Aum mani padme hum....
That's all I can do for you right now...but I will try to remember to say a blessing and a prayer for you each day--but perhaps not so visibly....  



12 Aug 2003 @ 20:21 by David @130.194.13.101 : Bummer!
I'm sorry to hear that - pretty unfair really.
David  



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Other stories in
2012-05-03 00:04: An evolving path
2012-01-02 13:52: 2011 Accomplishments and 2012 Aims
2011-11-17 02:20: Your inner piece
2011-02-01 00:05: Slow Mo Flow
2011-01-22 18:40: Recognition
2010-08-23 00:36: Where's Ming?
2010-07-20 14:24: Getting other people to do stuff
2010-06-22 00:27: Inventory
2010-06-19 23:10: Conversations
2009-10-28 12:31: Then a miracle occurs



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