I am proud to tell anyone that I am from New Jersey. When you move to other areas, you see clearly that you are from a very unique society of strongly opinionated people who share their thoughts with candid directness, with anyone. It’s like being from a land all its own. Seems hard to deny though that there is something about us folks, born and bred in Jersey, that makes us an interesting breed. I am not sure if it was the six lanes of gridlock traffic, the not so quality air we inhaled, the tainted water we drank, the lead paint we ate or the over-crowded-ness that shaped me the most, but there is definitely something that makes people from that region stand alone.
The first time I moved away I left for the scenic sights of the Pocono Mountains in 1997. I fluttered back and forth from South Jersey and North in between my stays at the highest peak of Mt. Pocono from 1997-2004. Since 2005, however, I have left the area knowing I might never come back. The only thing that tempts me to think about returning is money. Once I moved far enough away to completely redefine my life, I took a shot at self-employment. I established my first cleaning business in 2005. Ultimate Home Services came to be after I moved to North Carolina and needed to earn Jersey wages to raise my son and meet our needs. Jobs were offering under $7.00 an hour. I saw no future in that and instead took the few dollars I was getting ($72 every other week) in child support and purchased cleaning supplies. I then told every stranger I met that I was a cleaning professional. It was not long after that, I was hiring employees to help.
I am not sure why life works out the way it does, but I have moved far enough away from the concrete jungle to have learned that New Jersey offers its residents a great opportunity to establish a solid work ethic. I am guessing, in my reflections and thoughts, that it might be because the competition is so tough, so you grow up fighting your way to the top, in school, and in the workplace. It is like a shark tank really, eat or be eaten. I might let you take a nibble, I might even feed you a morsel, but be careful how close you tread.
Sometimes I wish I stuck with Merry Maids until I got a Master’s Degree in Business and built a cleaning empire in New Jersey. I would be retired by now. I try not to dwell too much on the what if’s, but I know that if I did have to move back to New Jersey again, I would be able to maintain and establish myself to earn a great living in no time at all. I would have made a killing if I found the mop long before I found music, but as it turns out…I pushed and promoted bands before I ever learned how to promote myself. Nonetheless, I used the same concepts I learned in my band promotion days and applied them to building my own business.
I love my life…thanks for reading.