I had been a practicing engineer since I graduated from college in 2005. I've designed exercise equipment, insulation systems for nuclear reactors, and hydraulic and pneumatic power units/systems for customers from around the world. All of that change this past Monday when I started working at a local brewery.
This career change came about for a few reasons - the owner of this brewery has known me for some time, (I can still recall volunteering there the first year they were open and I was their store's 1st customer), he knew I was looking for a job in the brewing industry, something came up at his brewery that he thought I'd be a good fit for, and I lept at the opportunity.
I have been looking for something new for awhile. At my most recent job I had become bored with the day-to-day routine and the fact that people who had been working there longer than I've been alive still only had 2 weeks of vacation for the calendar year. Couple that with my belief that how and with whom you spend your time is more important than money, and you have a person who will not hesitate to try something new and appealing.
It is a pay cut, with longer hours, but I am happier now than I have been at any job I have held prior to this one. My better half is quite happy as well. The combination of me coming home tired but happy w/ her appreciation of her newfound title of '(soon-to-be) wife of a brewery employee' makes her smile every time she says it or thinks about it.
Do I recommend such a job change to people? That is to say, a job change from what you're doing to something you'd prefer doing? Absolutely. You do not know how much time you have and who knows how many go-rounds we will have on this earth. So the best bet is to assume this is your one 'shot' at life and to make the most of it. I have chosen to do so, in part, by taking advantage of an opportunity to work at a brewery. And I know I am a happier person for having done so.
**NOTE** As a result of the hours of my new job the beer news relayed via twitter and facebook will be shared but (probably) at a later time because I do not utilize a computer during the day (and I do not have a smart phone). So, do not assume the absence of activity in the morning or afternoon is an indication that the 'feeds' are dead.