Yeah, I typed this on the plane ride to California, and I'm working on an actual California update for sometime soon.
So, I’ve been busy lately.
Obviously I haven’t managed to sufficiently update my blog for quite some time for reasons I mentioned in my last (brief) entry.
I’m actually en route to California right now and have finally found time to write a little about what’s been going on with me over the past weeks. It’s been hectic, but it’s been incredibly great.
The week of July 23-27, I frantically packed and cleaned in preparation for my move from Tuscaloosa. At that point, I didn’t really have a clue what I was doing, just that I would be living with my parents for the time being and that I would get to see Kettle a heck of a lot more.
At some point during this week, the fact that I would soon be leaving behind nearly every friend I had really hit me. I realized how much I would miss Monday night dinners with Ashley, goofing off with the praise band at practice and hanging out with Keke, writing hit songs with nothing but a guitar and our brilliance.
Ashley brought the puppy over to the house that Thursday night. I think I’ve mentioned Ranger in one of my recent blogs. The poor dog infested the house with fleas, which came into play the next week.
All my stuff was packed up, I would be taking a carload home on Friday, and the rest would be loaded into a U-Haul the following day and trucked off to a storage unit in Level Plains.
My dad and I drove up to T-town that Saturday, somehow managing not to strangle each other in the process. Aside from the actual moving, the trip was actually pretty fun. You could almost say we bonded. We even stopped for ice cream. Gas station ice cream, but ice cream, nonetheless.
Once all my stuff was gone, I still had two more days of working at the Productivity Center, so I basically was living out of a suitcase. I stayed at the 1717 the first night and quickly realized that the fleas were there and they were multiplying, apparently. It was ridiculous!
The second night I stayed with Anneliese and had a much easier time sleeping with no little bugs biting me. That Wednesday (the day after I stayed with Anneliese) was incredibly hectic, with me running around and trying to make preparations to really leave Tuscaloosa. Eddie came and inspected the house, and once that was done, I was officially moved out. I officially no longer lived in Tuscaloosa. It was a weird feeling.
My car was packed up with all the random things that I didn’t manage to cram into the U-Haul the previous weekend. Rob, Ashley, Chase and I actually went to Atlanta for a regional worship leaders conference for the rest of that week, which proved interesting for me because I spent half of the trip trying to convince my body to relax, that the moving part was really over and I didn’t have to be stressed any more.
Seriously, the leadership conference was good, and it was great to get to spend a few days with some friends from T-town before finalizing the move. I even got to have lunch with Lauren that Saturday before proceeding from Atlanta to Clio, where my parents live. We ate at a restaurant near the Georgia Tech campus called the Tin Drum. I guess you would probably call the food Asian-Fusion. I had a curried rice dish that was fantastic.
Once I left Atlanta, I hit the highways and made it to Enterprise to see Kettle that evening. And I was officially, really and truly moved.
So, at some point during all this, the publisher of the Troy Messenger e-mailed me and mentioned that Michelle Gerlach from Andalusia had passed my info along to her. I know that I’ve mentioned this already. I was pretty surprised. Stacy finally called me on Monday, Aug. 10, and asked me to come in for an interview the next day. Oddly enough, when she called, I had actually just left an interview with Books-A-Million, where the general manager had basically offer me a position as a manager. I was definitely more interested in a reporter position, so I told Stacy I would be glad to come in.
Oh, another surprise from that day I forgot to mention was getting to have lunch with Kettle in Dothan after my interview. It was unexpected for both of us. It was already becoming clear that living that much closer together was going to be a very good thing.
Tuesday morning, I got up and headed over to the Messenger office in Troy. I had a great interview with Stacy, and she offered me the job then and there. I let her know I was definitely interested, and she told me she would send me a proposal later that day. I was excited (and still am).
I actually ended up starting with the paper that Friday, and I have absolutely loved it so far. There have definitely been challenging parts, mostly just getting used to the somewhat odd hours and getting to know my way around and know the people in the community that I’ll be working with a lot. I’ve been on the job for almost two weeks, and it’s definitely been a learning process.
I feel like I have actually written some pretty good stuff so far, and it has been fun. My favorite things that I’ve written so far are probably three pieces that I’ve done about the heat wave that South Alabama has experienced. One was an overview, one was about how the heat and drought are affecting farmers, and the other was about the effects on senior citizens. I’ve gotten pretty good feedback about the work I’ve done, too.
Interestingly, I actually hadn’t planned to work in August at all, but I don’t mind because my job is so great. I hope I continue to like it this much. I’ve decided to continue to live with my parents for now because there are very few apartments available in Troy, and this will give me a chance to pay down some student loans with no bills or rent to pay.
Being closer to Kettle has been really great, as I mentioned. We’ve been spending a lot of time together, and, thankfully, we haven’t gotten tired of each other yet. Ranger is doing great. And Kettle just got hired (today, actually!) at the Messenger, too, as the sports editor. It’s going to be really interesting working together again (we worked together five years ago at the Ledger, but that was a long time ago, and we were both in much different positions then). I think (and hope) it will be a very good thing. At least, I think it will be nice to see him more frequently. We actually didn’t get to spend any time together at the beginning of last week, and it was hard being that close to each other and still not getting to see each other.
OK, my computer is about to die, so I’m going to end here for now. I’m landing in San Francisco in a little more than an hour. I’m excited about this trip! I’m sure I’ll have lots of pictures to share soon.
Present and accounted for.
3 weeks ago