Some folks make extreme life choices. They leave good, secure jobs to follow a dream or escape the monotony of daily life. Some buy the farm (literally, and sadly, sometimes figuratively) they’ve always wanted; they raise goats, and chickens and sell pickled foods at farmers markets. Some run for a political office in a state that doesn’t swing their way (shameless plug: Vote Holli Woodings for Idaho Secretary of State). Some become wildly successful by chance, while others work hard yet just can’t seem not to fail. Some go back to school. Some join the circus.
I find myself in the conundrum of an extreme life decision. Do I…
A. Continue the professional career I have built, working at the job I love with great co-workers, a myriad of opportunities and a “good feeling” at the end of the day, or
B. Follow the rabbit down the rabbit hole?
The rabbit is my husband, whom I love immensely. The hole is McDermitt, Nevada.
Sean (my husband) has been commuting to his family’s business in McDermitt, on a weekly basis, for nearly ten years. The business is the Say When Casino. He is basically the person behind maintenance of the slots, fryers, urinals and security system. Oh, and supply deliveries. And painter. Roofer. IT guy. Morning drop (or gaming currency counter). Handy-man. Wifi wrangler. Mom pleaser. Say When, Renaissance Man.
The opportunity to take the business over from his mom has surfaced. She took the business over from her mother, one of the original owners. Financially, it’s too great a favorable circumstance to pass up. Not only would the annual net earnings be more than a salary from a regular, Joe-Schmo employer, but we stand to profit if we can sell the joint. That’s it. Sean already is there. The transition from mother to son is happening.
Grant it, McDermitt is only 180 miles away from our home in Boise, Idaho – about a three hour drive. On the other hand, McDermitt is very small – an unincorporated border wisp of a town on the edge of the middle of nowhere and Fort McDermitt, a Paiute Indian Reservation. Weather: windy. Commerce: Zilch. Population: 513, and waning.
I’m Going All In
Sean and I want to be together. We are the proud new owners (or soon-to-be) of the Say When Casino & Cafe. We will work together at the casino by day and night, and live and love together at the Dufurrena family house. Sean’s mom will retire, but continue to offer support as needed. And I hope that Sean’s sister continues to be a part of the business, too.
Ideas. Plenty of them. Everything from brewing our own Yah-Te-Hey IPA to installing an espresso machine. It’s exciting, and a little scary, and a bit daunting. There’s not much in McDermitt, but I look forward to making the most of it, and maybe even making a little bit of difference.
I hope to onboard the person who will replace me at Boise State University – I will exit sometime the end of July. The Digital Communications Specialist position will be listed on under the Administrative and Professional Career Posting page on the Human Resource Services site.
While in McDermitt, I hope to maintain my professional social media, web content creator and PR skills through remote and in-person professional consulting and freelance work, contact me at ladufurrena(at)gmail.com to chat. You can bet your bottom dollar that the Say When soon will be online. Here is the Facebook Page I will be managing, please like us!
Stay tuned for many more blog posts about this new adventure and stop by if you’re traveling on Highway 95 between Winnemucca and Boise!