In August 2004 I allowed my lust for the sky to wane, and focused hard on academic research. It gave me plenty - a PhD, a bunch of wages/billings to date, and a saleable set of skills. And this is a photo of me after eight years at it:
Fine. No problem. But after eight years it was clear that the academic research gig wasn't gonna work for me - at that time. I searched my memories for the time I was the happiest. In Jan 2013 I got back into the sky again. For the last two years I've had my Facebook status as "part time DZ bum" and used a day job(s) to meet my (most important) responsibilities to family and traditional life. But I love the sky.
After two years at it this way I took this photo yesterday, on my 999th skydive. So as a career (what career?) goes I didn't entirely choose the path myself but I dunno, the path might have been a good one.