He did say that he was taking time off. Why not take him at his word? Maybe he’s climbing Everest or helping the Missionaries of Charity in some hellhole and he doesn’t want to be found.
Ha! He’s a very open person. So while that’s a nice thought, it wouldn’t fit in with his persona. He said he was taking time off, IMO, because he got laid off, and he was just being kind. But then again, if there are no answers, one just doesn’t know.