Me and my sister were born in Beckley, West Virginia, a smallish berg southeast of Charleston down I-64. Perched right on top of a mountain, Beckley had fierce winters of wind and ice that made normal life most difficult.
My Mom’s sister, who had earlier moved to Tampa, kept telling her how great it was in the Sunshine State. And after slipping on ice one too many times, Mom said, “That’s it! We’re moving to Tampa!”
Dad got a job selling eye glasses in an optometrist’s office but secretly aspired to bigger things. When he read in a trade journal about a managerial position in a North Dakota optometrist’s office, he jumped at the chance and sent in his resume….without telling Mom.
Some weeks later Mom saw a letter addressed to Dad from Minot, North Dakota. Curious, she carefully opened it and was surprised to read that Dad had been offered the optometrist’s managerial job. Her surprise turned to irritation at not being consulted on such a major life style change.
She had no intention of moving to a frozen wasteland after just moving to Florida. Mom tore up the acceptance letter and never told Dad about it until years later.
Now, as I work from home in Coronavirus induced semi-isolation, my mind begins to wander and wander…all the way up to North Dakota. With only 10.7 folks per square mile, the Peace Garden State sounds like an ideal place to hunker down, make art and get my mind off pandemics. Just one thing, I wonder if they have baba ganoush up there?