Changing Directions in your life

I guess now that I took the plunge and decided to learn to sail and move into a sailboat, makes sense to talk about other moments in my life when I took the plunge and changed direction of my life.

Growing up

I had a great childhood.  Growing up with my parents and my late sister, I had everything going perfect in my life.  In 1969 we moved into the house my parents still live in.  Even though they were both doctors, we travel on family vacations frequently and spent my summers in the Dominican Republic with my cousins and close family.


On Becoming an Architect at Tulane

Early in life I always knew I wanted to be an Architect.  I wasn’t very good at sports but I did practiced swimming, took piano lessons and learned to paint with Andrés Bueso.  I attended Tulane University School of Architecture and graduated with a Masters Degree in 1985.

 With Isabel Allende at Librería Paréntesis (1995)

With Isabel Allende at Librería Paréntesis (1995)

Paréntesis Bookstore and Isabel Allende

I practiced Architecture for ten years when I took my first plunge.  I bought a Bookstore in Plaza las Américas and learned all about owning a retail business while managing the store for four years.  It became a popular New Age and Self-Help Bookstore and with the help of Isabel Allende when she published “Paula” and signed books at the store, even more.  While I managed the store I became a Private Pilot and produced my first TV Show “Entreparéntesis”.  A pilot made for television about New Age authors that aired at a local PBS affiliate.

After closing the store in 1998 for reasons beyond my control, I went into unchartered waters and worked for an Airline and an unsucessful Dotcom business for a brief period of time.  Once again, reinventing myself.

The Wandering Years

What followed after that was an array of employee/self-employed odd jobs which ranged from Aviation to Computer Consulting while I worked on my own entrepreneurial venture,

In 2005 I became a Real Estate Agent, a license which I still hold.  While doing work as a Real Estate Agent I earned my LEED Accredited Professional accreditation and began doing consulting work for some local clients.  This didn’t last long after the Obama’s ARRA Funds vanished and local interest began to wane.

I revisited my writing, directing and producing interest and produced two additional TV Pilots: “Feng Shui, MD” and “Viviendo Verde”.

On Becoming an Actor / Director / Producer

In 2009-10 I started booking gigs as extra in movies and roles in several tv ads.  Later took some acting lessons, traveled to NY extensively in 2011 and became a SAG-AFTRA Actor.

 "Reinas" at Teatro Coribantes

"Reinas" at Teatro Coribantes

I wrote, produced and directed two commercials for the Doritos Super Bowl Competition in 2011 and 2012.  I wrote, produced and directed my first short film “Good News” on a tight budget and schedule while rehearsing for my first theater performance since High School; “Reinas”.  I continued Acting, Writing, Producing and Directing and eventually won my first “Best Actor” Award for my performance in my short film “Contéstame” (“Answer Me”).  My latest production; “Threesome” (“Cama para tres”) was presented in several Film Festivals both Nationally and Internationally.

So I can probably resume my professional life as Architect/Retailer/Pilot/Realtor/Actor/Screenwriter/Producer/Director/Sailor... and lifelong learner.

Keep Reinventing Yourself

I’m not stating all this to brag.  I feel humble and fortunate to have been able to explore life to the fullest and on my own terms.  I’ve definitely have had my ups and downs along the way.  Not every decision has been the correct one, but it has been a learning and growing process.

It’s somewhat fun and exhilarating to keep reinventing yourself but you need to have the gut and heart to do it.  Not always easy!

To paraphrase something I read recently.  "If you’re tired of reinventing yourself, focus and stick to one thing!"  Will I be able to do it at this stage in my life?  Not sure, I'm not tired yet!