More importantly, I think our conversation has distilled down my thoughts on this to a more basic premise, which is a difficult concept in today's world:This is a profound point, and one that is worth thinking on. Thanks to Andre for a great series and lots of good thoughts on the geographical questions surrounding chemistry jobs.
Don't be afraid to make a mistake.We all are taught to seek out perfection in every step we take in our life. However, one slip on your planned road isn't going to destroy your life.
If you take a job and don't like it, work on finding a new one. If you don't think your grad degree is in the right field, try a postdoc in something different (I've done this one, and it is possible). If you've spent a few years in grad school but don't think it's for you, you should at least consider that slogging your way through it might be worse for you professionally than just leaving.
The harder you work on finding the right spot for you, the better chance you will have of being the success you want.
(parts 1, part 2 and part 3.)