The itinerant and the local

When people feel ownership over a place, they clean up after themselves. When they expect to leave, they might not be as conscientious, since they may not expect to have to clean up their mess.

Schools are better off when teachers stay. Businesses waste less training time when they minimize turnover. Of course, fresh talent brings new energy and ideas, but constantly replacing leaders in a school leads to numerous innovative plans that never get fully carried out.

You might be faced with an exciting new opportunity. Should you take it or fully finish what you started? What would be more rewarding? From what would you learn the most? The grass may be, but is not always, greener; it might be best to stay put and make sure you’ve given all you have to give where you are before moving onto something else.

Or who knows? Is it possible to optimize a life? Perhaps whichever fate we choose, unless there is a moral decision involved, will bring us negligently different joys and pains. We shouldn’t make ourselves out to be more important to an institution than we are. So we should just choose a path and make sure to delight in the steel uphills as well as the sequoias.

The question I have been asking myself is: are you an itinerant or a local? I can both see myself wandering from town to town as the Gilmore Girls troubadour and rocking on the front porch as mean old Mrs. Dubose in Scout’s Mockingbird world. I suppose time will tell if I can’t.


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