So here it is. In about twelve hours I leave the Sleepy Hamlet for good. Five weeks on the road, and then I head back to my Big City.
It's kind of surreal. Tonight I met some friends at our local watering hole (across the street from work) and we just kind of chilled for a while. All of us are leaving town this week - some for a vacation or work; a couple of us aren't coming back. Most of us are going to meet up for a birthday in the Bay in a couple of weeks, so it wasn't a good-bye, which was good, because I don't know how I would have handled that. And I'm not an emotional guy at all.
I've had a real love/hate relationship with this town. There have been so many moments where I've literally wanted to bang my head against the wall because I'm so frustrated - too small, not enough to do, too many people all up in my business. But I've also had a lot of fun here the past three years, and I'll never be able to think of this place without those positive memories flooding back.
And I've really learned to appreciate the beauty of this place, especially in the past year. I remember walking to work and looking at the fog hovering over the mountains and just being in awe. I took walks up into the hills and looked at the big houses overlooking the valley, and I drove all over the area, and I explored the wonderful park that's here (built by the same guy who built Central Park). Perhaps I couldn't leave this place until I had fully embraced it.
So now I leave. This blog will have to change. It will continue, of course - it's part of me, just like this Sleepy Hamlet is - but the focus will have to shift. It will be about my excellent adventures on the road for the next five weeks, and then I guess it will focus on my triumphant return to New York. You can go home again, I guess. I'm gonna try. We'll see what happens. I hope you'll join me.
I'm exhausted from packing, and I've still got some stuff to do before I finally leave this apartment sometime t'm'row afternoon. But I just wanted to take this moment to say...
Ashland, OR...thanks for the memories. I'll see you around.