There’s so much I need to tell you.
Let’s start with Seattle, though.
I had never left the airport, even though I’ve had countless connecting flights that sent me traveling through the terminals. This most recent flight ended in Seattle and I finally enjoyed the city.
The aquarium was breathtaking and I loved the way their salmon exhibit was overhead, showing something familiar in a new light. The Public Market was exciting too, but a little overwhelming if you’re not in the mood to shop. My favorite day was spent running through Queen Anne’s and back down to the waterfront. I watched the city change and pulse based on its residents and embraced the role of urban explorer until I landed myself back to the waterfront.
I was offered, and accepted, a new job while I was in Seattle too!
And this is the news that is most important to share. It’s a big promotion and I’m so excited to take on more responsibility at work. But with increased workload and a bit more of a public facing role, it’s time I untangle myself from this column.
I have to admit that this change is daunting.
With the new job, and without the tangible writing I put onto these pages every two weeks, I may become unrecognizable to you. I’ll grow and change and continue on with my life — but to you, I’ll be stuck in this moment, a 29-year-old semi-adventurous writer.
It’s finally starting to sink in that death is forever. Or, more specifically, that your death is forever and that while there is so much I need to tell you, there’s never going to be a time when I can pick up the phone and do it.
I traveled through the Grand Canyon for five days with Patrick and some close friends. When I got back out and to cellphone service, I didn’t have a single missed call or text from you.
I’ll never be able to tell you the way the water of the Colorado River flowed strongly, yet delicately around the rock I sat on while watching the sunset. I’ll never get to tell you about how scared I was each time a train of mules passed me on the winding trail up and out of the Grand Canyon, and we’ll never laugh about how excited I was to get a McDonald’s Big Mac at the top.
And you’ll never know about Thanksgiving at Grandma’s this year, where I got to see Dad, Arne, and his new girlfriend, whom you’ll never meet, and how we went to some of the places in Florida you and Dad had gone together when you were young.
There are so many things you’ll never know now, even though there is so much I need to tell you. But I am grateful that I’ll never have to show you my last column. That when the world stopped and you left it, this column was still something you got to brag about and share.
Over the five years that I’ve written Tangled Up In Blue, a lot has happened that seems so insignificant now.
I got to write about buying new skis, running lots of races, heading into the backcountry with friends, and all of the other mundane feelings that I somehow put to paper.
You loved and read them all, and for that I am forever grateful.
And I’m grateful too, for those who are reading this column now. I hope that although this last column will end in just 98 more words, you’ll still find a way to know me, that we’ll meet again someday on the avenue. Whether it’s a nod on the ski trail, or a summit chat on Mount Marathon on a bluebird day — I promise, I’ll always have so much to tell you.
Because, in the paraphrased and modified words of Bilbo Baggins, five years is far too short a time to write for such excellent and admirable readers.
I don’t know half of you as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.