It has been a year since we moved…a year this week. In some ways that feels like a lifetime ago already, in other ways it feels like we just moved and are still moving. I can still taste the freshly baked bread and soup my friend brought the day we were cleaning our house and the dinners people made for us that week after we had sold all of our cooking stuff. I had friends on their knees scrubbing my oven and hardwood floors and people dropping off goodbye gifts up until the day we left. All we could take with us were 12 50lb duffle bags, 6 20 lb carry ons and 6 “purses”. We had planned it so that we dropped our dog off at one airport, dropped our car off at our friends who bought it, took a train to get a rental van, fill up the rental van with our luggage pick up the kids from school and head to the airport ourselves. The kids school was amazing and made that Thursday a casual day so that our kids didn’t have to go to the airport in their uniforms. We drove up in our van full of stuff, and walked into the school yard to get our kids. I still want to cry thinking of this moment—most of the parents and staff were there with their kids. There were hugs, tears, more hugs and tears, pictures and then off we went. Our 2+ years over. New friends that we already desperately missed and still do.
Moving isn’t as simple as picking up your stuff and taking it some place new. In this case it was selling and buying cars, new phones, new accounts, new doctors and dentists, new schools, new friends, new routines, new climate. And moving means you leave pieces of your heart places. My heart is in Scotland, France, Canada, California, Washington and now Oregon. All the places I have lived in the last 40 years. Facebook is actually amazing in that way—I have a central connection point where I get to see the new baby of a friend of mine from junior high in Paris, or pictures of my kids’ friends in Scotland, students we worked with at Stanford, UW or in Bellevue, friends from school in Seattle, grad school in Canada or law school at UW.
When we showed up at the airport we were tired, kids were overwhelmed and we were lugging 24 pieces of luggage, quite a few of them overweight. I had been praying desperately for someone with compassion at the checkin counter. We had weighed each bag over and over again. Some were under and others were over. We had shuffled shoes around from bag to bag trying to even everything out to exactly 50lbs. We rolled up the counter and started chatting to the women working there. She checked in all our bags no problem. Then she asked if we would like her to check through some of our carry ons. We had 12…most of them overweight. She checked almost all of them through no questions asked from Glasgow to Seattle so that we just had the 3 we needed for the plane! She was literally an angel sent to help us.
I’m really thankful for all the people we have met along the way. I miss so many of them scattered around this earth. People generally are welcoming and kind. They have opened up their homes and hearts to both the kids and to us. People have fed us, provided for us, showed us the ropes, and cared for us even before they knew us. In the midst of a world with lots of fear, evil and violence there are so many people who trust, care and welcome others.These pictures below are only a fraction of our goodbyes that last week. There are so many people I don't have pictures with!