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Thursday, April 21, 2016

Home is where the heart is.

I've been a little tied up, so I haven't been able to post as much as I wanted to this week. I am on a business trip for work. It's my first official out of town business trip, and it's taken me all the way across the country. In the past week; my feet have touched four states in one day, I've been in two different rental cars, walked through four different airports (and about to check out a couple more), and I've had the pleasure of meeting the nicest people from one side of the country to the other. I feel a bit like a politician running for office.
This trip takes me back. Back, to the first time I remember being taken to the "big city" as a kid. Now we lived close to what was called a city. It even had a mall. And, my grandparents on my dad's side lived in places that were considered cities as well. But, the first time I was allowed to walk around among the skyscrapers was when I was 13.
We had some new neighbors who had come from Maryland about a year or so before. The father worked just outside of Washington, DC. In elementary school, we took a trip to DC nearly every year to see the museums or the zoo, but we were not set free in the cement jungle. Well, our new neighbors had a daughter, who was the same age as me. We became fast, lifelong friends. Her mother arranged to take several of us to Ford's Theater. Yes, the one where President Lincoln was shot. We went to see a production of Peter Pan.
The trip to DC took about an hour and a half. We got to town early, so we would have enough time to explore. The buildings were so tall and some took up entire blocks. I remember going into Macy's Department Store and the girls wanted to see the fur coats on the 5th floor. They were so enamored with the coats. I was so enamored with the fact that we were on the 5th floor itself.
The theater was so impressive, so much more than anything I had seen before. It was the first production of any kind, outside of a school play, that I had seen in person. The stage, the actors, the effects; all had such an impact on me. I think I talked about it for weeks afterwards. I'm sure my family got tired of hearing about it.
There were many more trips to Washington, DC over the years, and we've even vacationed there and got married there, now that I live in East TN. I don't know that any other city could have prepared me for the shear mass of buildings  and staggering number of people here in San Diego, CA. It's beautiful here. The hills remind me a little of the mountains back home, but they are not the same. The ocean air is intoxicating to an Appalachian boy. The waves crashing against the rocky coastline, which is peppered with sunbathing sea lions, just doesn't compare to anything back home. That's neither good nor bad, it's just what it is in its own right.
The city is a nice place to visit. The coastline and beaches are beautiful, and I definitely hear the siren's call. This trip was fun and it certainly was functional. I needed the training I received to improve my work. But, it's not home. I can be comfortable for a while in this environment, to get done what I need done. That is all for now though. Home is where the heart is, and my heart right now is in East TN.