I guess I've been dragging my feet when it comes to winding up this tale. Perhaps you noticed? It's partially because I have so enjoyed reliving these experiences through your eyes, that I hate for the fun to end, but there's a lot more to it than that. Here's the thing. How do you end the never-ending story?
You may think this story ended as soon as we packed up our belongings and boarded the plane, but that's just not true. These stories came home with us -- became a part of who we are, and who our children grew up to be. They reshaped our beliefs, our ethics, our politics, our philosophy, our world view...broadened our tolerance for some things, but narrowed it for others. They made it impossible for our kids to fit back into their old roles in their old cliques when we moved back to the town where they grew up, but they opened the door to many new friends and new experiences. It affected not only their food preferences and love of travel, but also their learning styles, their creativity, and their open mindedness. In fact, those three year's worth of stories have probably colored most every important decision they have made, and always will.
That being said, we still have to put this baby to bed at some point. So, I thought I would give you John's last letter home today, share a couple of more stories over the next week, and then I suppose, we will call it a day.
April 13, 1994
Dear Mom & Dad,
This has been a pretty rough week. Saturday morning Mike called and informed me about Nub's cancer. Then shortly after that I got a call that John Tankersley was killed in Qatar in a boating accident. I've know John and worked with him since I came to work with Mobil. He was my counterpart at Mobil's field operations here. They had just moved back to Dallas last year. It had everyone pretty much in a state of shock the whole weekend. Then Alan Silverman's dad died before he could get home Saturday. Plus his secretary's father died this past weekend also. I tell you, it just seems to come in bunches.
I finally received Mike's last letter. He was talking about going to the family reunion and was wanting to hear about our plans. I doubt we will have time this year to attend. If we do, it will have to be a last minute thing. I won't have quite as much time at home as I did last year. I'll be saving a week's worth of vacation in case I need it during the fall.
Report cards for our kids came out this past week. Alexis' teacher seems to be real pleased with the effort she is putting out now. She seems to be focusing a little better on the task at hand. She was doing a great job on her science project until she lost her display posters. Can't find them at school anywhere and she insists she brought them home, but we can't find them around here either. Austin seems to be breezing along. He needs some more kids to give him some competition.
Becky is finally getting close to finishing her quilt. In fact, she has to be done by next weekend. Everyone is going to display their quilts at a fair. She has really done a good job, but I doubt she'll ever do another, particularly when we move home. Putting one of those things together takes a lot of time and she probably won't have much of that back home.
P.T. Arun has just undergone a reorganization and things around here are more confusing than usual. About half of the engineers in my group are going out to another section. Still remains to be seen exactly what I will be doing. Probably pretty much the same thing. It will be a little harder for me to keep in touch with the engineers in a different group, but that's what I will have to do.
Well, guess that's about it for now. Thanks for taking care of my IRS stuff. It's just real iffy trying to mail that kind of thing from here. But from what I saw on CNN, doesn't look like the US mail system is any safer. Give everyone our regards.