Damn. It's been a long couple of weeks. I'm sitting in the Starbucks at the Columbus International Airport in Columbus, Ohio waiting to board my flight. This morning my friend Scott picked me up at my parent's house and drove me here. We laughed and joked the whole way, giving me the curious sensation of being so glad to see him, but missing him at the same time. I wish I'd had more time here to see my friends from high school that I still miss (which reminds me, HI JEFF!!!!!!), but it's not like those were the plans when I came out here. Taking care of Ma and Pa was a full time gig, and I was happy to do it. Not coming home to help them would have been a mistake.
But this place, Ohio, is such a weird state. It's the land of Styrofoam cups, fried macaroni and cheese, shopping malls, and freeways as far as the eye can see. It's fast food, SUV's, sweater sets, and lawn figurines. People here dress, talk and act so differently than anywhere else I've ever lived. There is a sort of Ohio look about the people here. It's hard to describe, but it's definite. The highlights in their hair, the gold jewelry, the nail polish, the khakis and the white Nike shoes just seem to exude a certain Ohio brand. It's commercial. It's bizarre. I have to think that when foreigners think of Americans, it's the humble Ohioan that comes to mind.
Seeing the town I left behind nearly seven years ago is also a jolt. It's changed a lot, but in so many ways it's the same place. At least it's the same people, only older. Even my parent's dogs are sporting more gray in their hair. Either way, time certainly is marching on in this part of the world.
I am just so glad that I was here to help my parents out. I'm grateful to my employers for not only letting me go, but being so supportive about it. When I asked for the time to go, there was no hesitation on their part. It was just, "Go. You have our full support". It's bewildering to find an employer like that. Refreshing, too. I'll have to thank them when I get back with a round of corn dogs and ice cream (my bosses favorites--not sure about those corn dogs though).
The weather has also been of interest while I was here. When I arrived on March 2, it was a balmy 45 degrees outside. The next day we got on ice storm, and a few days later a blizzard came through and dropped a whopping 20 inches on us. Now, as I wait to leave, it's back in the 50's and all the snow has melted. Strange place.
What the ice storm left behind...
And then the blizzard...
Yep. And now it's back to Montana. Yeehaw.
Song of the day: Knockin' on Heaven's Door by Bob Dylan