Elvis has left the Building- April 29, 2018

I’m gone. Or rather, I’m home.

I said goodbye to lots of people, this last week, and I realized as I’ve done that, I’ve never returned. From one move to the next, I’ve never really gone back. Sure there was a quick visit to West Virginia and even to Hutto, but I’ve never really returned. All through grade and high school, the last day of school was always the last time I saw friends. While the situation will still change, I feel like I will be coming back. I will be in the same ward, same apartment complex with many of the same friends.

Goodbye Provo

Monday-Wednesday were consumed with finishing my preparations to leave. Monday I attended FHE, where we hiked up Rock Canyon, then quickly met up with Lydia for a quick walk and a goodbye. Tuesday, I had a couple friends over, and we watched a movie, “The Tree of Life,” and ate some steaks and ice cream. Just cleaning out the fridge. The movie was interesting and thought provoking, and I want to watch it again. Coming highly recommended, I was not disappointed and was blown away by the cinematography. Wednesday I handed over everything for Elders Quorum with the understanding I will help in any way possible, but the 1st counselor, Josh will be taking care of most everything now. And then Tanner came over and helped me bring a few tubs to Uncle Ben’s. That afternoon I resigned my contract for the same apartment, and decided to leave most of my books and dishes there to simplify the moving process. And I grilled some burgers, successfully finishing all of the meat I had.

Texas

The trip went well, security didn’t stop me, and no one sat next to me on the plane. With no layovers. My marvelous mother picked me up, and we talked for three hours on our way back negotiating our way through some awful traffic. I’m increasingly identifying Texas as home, and with the pending change happening at 91 Brigham St., Mass, this feels more permanent than ever. It helps that I do love Granbury, and envision my parents staying here indefinitely instead of wondering where the next homestead will be.

First thing Friday morning, Dad, Sawyer and I left for a fishing trip. We had a wonderful time, fishing for a couple hours, and catching lots of fish. Sawyer must have bagged 5 or 6, Bro. Dixon another 6 or 7, and his son 3 or 4. I caught two, and my Dad had no luck. Although, the other three all used a whopper plopper lure for each catch, while my dad and I tried lots of other kinds to little success. Nevertheless, that was the first fish I caught in what must be 10 years. I was a little hesitant at first, but by the second was putting my thumb onto his sandpaper teeth and taking the hook out. All were bass, either striped or large-mouth, with the Guadalupe variety remaining elusive. We’ll definitely be back. I confess, despite imagining myself as one, I am not some great sportsman. In fact, after so little fishing in the last ten years, my value on such trips is little, and I relegated myself to helping by at least carrying our equipment, while Sawyer and the Dixon’s blazed ahead. I even needed help in tying the knots and have much to relearn before I stand confident with a group of fishermen. I tip my hat to Sawyer. He taught me a thing or two.

The rest of the day was spent cleaning up the yard, the frontier that is open to me, as part of our summer beautification plans. Lots of work left. I’ve not been here in Granbury for this time of year, and am loving the wildflowers that are in bloom all throughout the town, including coloring our backyard.

The fire pit design masterminded by Cooper has now been accepted by the parents. I never imagined beauracracy could be that bad here, but the necessary paperwork has been pushed through, and we have the green light.

Tending to act without much formal planning, my garden is still in limbo, but I’ll sketch up a design or outsource to Cooper again, and we’ll get final approval this week.

Finances

Speaking of outsourcing, I’ve traditionally only spent money on church donations and golf. The rest went into the bank account. As I’ve aged, the complexity has increased, and with college I’ve been spending on -church -golf -dating -school tuition -school supplies -rent -food -laundry. Lately, I’ve added another expense category, -Indian outsourcing.

After reading about outsourcing to India using the website, YMII, Your Man in India, I became somewhat enamored by the idea, and have loved outsourcing projects, and appreciate the help they were in inexpensively launching my last venture.

Movie

Saturday night, we (Breyer, Cooper, Sawyer, Miller and I) went and saw the Avengers Infinity War at the Brazos Drive-In. For those who haven’t seen it, count yourself blessed. That was one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen. Granted, I’ve missed the last 15 superhero movies so I didn’t know who most of the people were. Apparently Black Panther made an appearance, and I didn’t even know it. In short, it was non-stop action without a compelling story. All good art has an agenda, and since we’ll kindly assume that this was good art given the $300 million to make it,  I’ll confess the biggest agenda I saw was pagan indoctrination. With action movies, I am generally inspired to go save the world. This time, I didn’t even commit to working out more let alone run for POTUS or something. Give me Sound of Music any day.  Nevertheless, it was fun to be with my siblings. We had snacks galore, Cooper cracked us up draping himself in his mosquito net for a while until realizing the pests weren’t being bothersome that night, and simply being out in the beautiful Texas night was relaxing.

Summer Goals

I’ve become frustrated by my incredible overuse of “um” and “like.” In many ways I’m proud of my colloquial speech, and I don’t want to sound stuffy or pretentious or academic. Yet, I need to use less fillers and be more concise. #summer goals #I’m-on-it.

Here are some of my other summer goals:

-save $25,000

-read 60 books (hereafter referred to as the Summer60)

-Build a garden

-Visit some ancestral sites in Missouri

-Discover what town in Germany the Gerken and Schenewark lines come from

-shoot under par in an 18 hole round of golf

-plant some fruit trees

-paddle Lake Granbury

-write daily in my journal

-read the Book of Mormon twice

complete Pres. Nelson’s challenge to study about Christ in the standard works.

-Get a car

I read my first two books for the Summer60. Admittedly, I started out light, with Golf Course Design, by Robert Trent Jones, Jr. and The Voyage, by Phillip Harris. I accomplished most of that during the lull at Sawyer and Miller’s baseball games. Both played great and helped carry their team.

In full gardening mode, and having finished reading about environmental golf course construction, it seems appropriate I end with this quote from a recent article on the church’s newsroom website, about stewardship of the earth, and from T.S. Eliot,

“a wrong attitude towards nature implies, somewhere, a wrong attitude toward God.”

 

 

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