Head East Old Man

We’re jumping in the car this morning, in about an hour actually, two days later than our intended departure for Richmond.  For someone who hasn’t necessarily enjoyed the Lou it is awfully difficult to leave.  I’m sure many of the reasons are laying beneath our Kevlar vest.  I say “didn’t necessarily enjoy the Lou”, but honestly there have been some good times here and we’ve met great people that will no doubt be friends for many years to come.

It didn’t dawn on me how much we love our home until Thursday.  I provided some assistance to Tracey in getting some things cleaned up to take pictures.  I started building a web site to support the sale yesterday (still in progress) and the sadness of leaving this place hit me like a ton of bricks.  I was looking at the pictures taken two years ago when closing and recalling the feeling of being in the home.  I was eating meals here, mowing the lawn here, drinking brews here way before the girls arrived.  This has been our castle, our safety zone when things haven’t been quite right anywhere else.

I have to say the best part of being in St. Louis the last 20 months has been going to school.  Now that it is winding down (graduation is May), I’m starting to realize just how much stability school has provided.  It’s been a routine, something to count on.  I remember thinking that WashU felt more like a family than Auburn ever has.  Sounds corny but Auburn really hasn’t given me anything that I haven’t discovered on my own.  WashU has given me a lifetime of validation and new beginnings.

Which Way is Up?I set a goal to be the best resource I could be, to help any person in need at my former employer.  I leave knowing that goal was accomplished.  My heart pours open for the people where we were working.  They continue to go through change and the most challenging change of all may be looming just over the next sunrise.  We still offer our help in any way and hope we can offer guidance from afar.

So off we go… I couldn’t think of any other song to convey my feelings this morning than the Counting Crows “Holiday In Spain.”  Maybe not the best tune but I like the “fly away to somewhere new” reference.

So where is somewhere new? Well it’s kind of a familiar feel.  Check this out:  In Staunton, Virginia we worked in the historic district out of a reconstruction era warehouse.  Our boss lived in an apartment upstairs.  We did lots of work in the pub after 5pm across a cobble stone street.  Our office manager was named Amanda.  Remember?

In Richmond, we’ll be working in the old historic district in an old tobacco warehouse converted to offices.  I’ll be living in an apartment above the office.  There happens to be a cobble stone street with a pub on the other side where it’s rumored employees continue their workdays after 5pm.  Our office manager is named Amanda.

Dead serious.  You can’t make this stuff up.

Here’s another one to file away in the “everything happens for a reason” category… You know that while Dad was sick last year we had made the decision to move back to be closer to him.  He didn’t know that we were interviewing because we didn’t want him to get his hopes up, reasoning it would be much better to surprise him with the news.  Obviously we never had the chance to tell him.  But what you may not know is Dad collected frogs.  He had tons of them from every part of the world.  It wasn’t until after we had accepted the new job and were reviewing some collateral that we noticed… the new company’s mascot is a frog.  We like to at least think that somewhere Dad is having a big laugh, slapping us on the back, and telling us to “give ’em hell”.

And we will…

No goodbyes for St. Louis.  Virginia, we’re comin’ home.

1 thought on “Head East Old Man”

  1. I remember when I was driving away from Staunton for the last time in 2006. I didn’t turn even turn on the radio because I thought no song could possibly express what I was going through. About two months later I discovered one that would have: “Adrift” by Barenaked Ladies. “Your heart’s got a heavy load, there’s still a long way to go. Keep your eyes on the road.”

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