So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye
Like my hairstyles since hitting puberty, life for me is ever-changing.Friends come and go – especially those made at the newspaper – which calls for one act I dislike more than running, trying on bathing suits and eating lima beans.Saying goodbye.I know, bidding adieu is a part of life. There’s that death thing no one can get out of – unless you’re a believer in cryonics. That gives that “Cold as Ice” song by Foreigner a whole new meaning. Not to mention Vanilla Ice’s mega-hit “Ice Ice Baby.”So that’s what he really meant by “Let’s kick it.”Since I live 1,200 miles from my hometown, I routinely say goodbye to friends and family after all-too-brief holiday visits. Nothing jerks the tears harder than saying so long, farewell to my parents and best friends for extended periods. But I have been known to cry a little when trying on a bathing suit. I can’t resist living in Colorado, especially on the Western Slope. The mountains are harder to resist than episodes of “Tori & Dean Home Sweet Hollywood.” I just can’t help myself.I did the same with “90210” back in college.This week I’m saying my goodbyes to yet another good friend from the paper, former copy editor Derek Franz, who’s heading to Yosemite National Park and beyond for an extended climbing experience. He doesn’t know how long he’ll be gone or where life will take him over the next year. I imagine he’ll go to great heights.Pun intended, especially for Derek.I can only hope the Sopris curse affects the guy I consider my little brother as it did me, someday bringing Derek back to his hometown. Although I understand if he ends up in Peru, free-climbing the main tower of Karma de los Condores. Or he could totally fit in working at the editorial offices of The Onion.Instead of an oyster, I guess that would make the world his onion.If Derek were a superhero, he’d be Spider-man. He can scale about anything, including brick walls, concrete platforms and great big boulders. I, on the other hand, would be Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld, because I like the sound of it. And her appearance is a full-grown woman with the mindset of a 13-year-old girl.Sounds vaguely familiar.Did I mention I’m probably going to watch the “90210” remake? Even if there is no Donna.Wishing friends like Derek fond farewells is always bittersweet. When people I work with or those I’ve befriended around town leave, it’s usually in their best interests. I’ve waved goodbye to my share of friends pursuing higher paying jobs, better housing for the price or college educations.Or sometimes they’re in love – always a great reason for a new venue in my opinion.Often it’s just a change of scenery my adventurous friends seek. Former PI reporter and friend Amanda, who now lives in Jackson Hole, had her reasons for leaving the valley and has never looked back.I suppose people back in Indiana say the same about me.That’s why it’s nice to be on Facebook. It’s not just for stalking anymore. Recently I’ve been in touch with old friends from high school I said goodbye to at graduation and hadn’t heard from since. One former classmate is a reporter at the Wall Street Journal. Another is a writer in Los Angeles. Not to brag, but Bob Woodward is also my friend on Facebook even though we didn’t attend the same high school. I just think that’s really cool Bob Woodward is my friend on Facebook.OK, he has more than 1,200 friends. I have like 90.At the end of our 10-year high school reunion, my classmates and I said goodbye to each other probably thinking we might not talk again. At least until the next reunion. But technology has changed in the last eight years, and now we’re back in touch through the magic of Facebook. I’m hoping the same is true with many of the friends I’ve made in Glenwood. Derek’s already a friend, and so is Amanda, among others who have moved on to better things. Even if they aren’t physically here, I can always check in and see how life is treating them.Maybe even see how they’re wearing their hair. I’m going to bet mine has changed.April E. Clark just had her hair cut. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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That sideline parent is me, parading to the field with a foldable chair, carrying an iced-coffee, armed with a bag of band-aids and a salty vocabulary ready to slay the referee or opponent that meddles…