I Found the Straw…………

I’m often asked how did you go from the corporate guy to the packing guy?  Why did you leave a successful company, big paychecks, corporate planes, and high blood pressure pills to the lonely solitary life of a packer?  I tell everyone it’s the lifestyle not the paycheck that’s for sure.  But I truthfully could never put my finger on the straw that broke the camel’s back; that caused me to walk out the door and never look back. 

There comes a time, a point, sometime in all of our lives, where money means nothing, and passion for what you do is everything….It’s hard to explain till you’re there or after you’re there to realize the change.  I found the camel breaking straw last night.  Took me six years but when I saw it, I knew it.  There it was lying in the bottom of a box in my shop at home. 

Trailhead Supply took a huge step forward this month and we bought the pack saddle tree making equipment from a long time and well known, very respected pack saddle builder.  I now have a 20’ stock trail stuffed with machinery and need to find a place to set up our new operation.  My shop at home was volunteered, but like most of our shops and garages, they are full of stuff none of us use or need, mines no difference.  So, the task to clean out the shop has started.  As I sort, toss, and move everything in the designated area, I found a sealed box.

I cut open the box to find stuff  from my desk that got dumped into this carton just before I slammed my office door shut for the last time.  There in the bottom of this box, was an email to me, from my partner, framed behind glass.  The email stated that I had bid a job for X-thousands of dollars, we had done the job and had billed correctly for the job but we were $4.37 short from hitting the company’s profit  % goal.  It went on to say how disappointed he was that I couldn’t find $4.37 somewhere.  He even gave me suggestions to use in the future like short a contractor etc. to get the additional monies to hit those % goals.  Nowhere in that email did he say that I ran the most profitable district, the largest grossing district in the company.  There was never a mention of how many millions of dollars I put into the company’s bank account, just I was $4.37 short of my % goal. 

So, for $4.37 I left a company that I started. A company, that put my kids through college.  A company that I thought I could easily retire from, to pack and follow my dreams……Dreams do cost money just not percentages.

Comment on this post (3 comments)

  • Pete says...

    I just read this , it is an inspiration to me. I want to be able to live the life that you are living now. I’m just scared to make that jump. I have two young children and a loving wife to provide for , so it makes it hard to " slam the door " on my corporate job . Any suggestions?

    June 18, 2016

  • Kathy Young says...

    Andy, you my friend have found the meaning of life. I tip my whiskey glass to you.

    June 06, 2016

  • Pam Fulbright says...

    Great read. Their loss, our gain.

    April 28, 2016

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published