Friday, August 10, 2012

Exit strategy

The beginning of the end is most certainly upon us. This past week has been focused on the initial steps of our transition. Somehow it is already Friday of yet another week. The weeks are absolutely flying.

Julia (the Kenyan chick) during her first go at Beep Bop
Sad as I am to start the process of bowing out of here, some pieces of the puzzle have come together relatively easily to help the transition flow smoothly. Last week our church council hired someone to fill my position as youth director. I'm really excited for Julia to come on board. She has worked with the families of our church before during one of our programs last fall, so she's not a completely new face around here. It's the right time in her career to take an opportunity like this, and I know she's going to do great things for the program. She was the first person to respond to the position when we posted it on a couple of local Facebook pages. We didn't even have to advertise and we filled the job with our first candidate. Sounds like an answer to prayer to me.

This week I also met up with someone who's interested in taking over the Fresh Factor blog after I leave. I heard about this person through my friend Megan from church. Megan's friend made a comment in passing that she loves the Fresh Factor and would like to write for that blog one day. Megan said, "Funny you should say that. I know the girl who writes it and she's leaving soon." We met at her home over homemade mango banana smoothies to talk details. I couldn't think of a more perfect person to continue the column. This lady even makes her own coconut milk. I actually think she's more qualified to write the blog than I am.

Golf with the new guys
Nick has continued doing turnover with his replacement at work as well. A guy moved here in May who will be taking over his job. Crazy thing is that this same guy lived across the walkway from us in our apartment complex in Coronado while he was going through training. I got a message from him back in January saying he was coming out here after his deployment. And here he is, our old neighbor who we watched become a team guy, stepping into Nick's shoes. Nick has already cleaned his desk and packed up his gear storage in anticipation of the movers coming.

Yes, the movers are coming. I keep looking around at our cozy living room setup and blinking in disbelief that it will all disappear in about 10 days.
Our living room grew a putting green
I know we will set it all up in our new place and it will look lovely there. But it won't have this backdrop of blue skies and palm trees swaying in the breeze through the window. We also have pinned down the day on the calendar during the last week of September when we'll board a plane, writing the last sentences of the final chapter of this very special story. We still have a good six weeks left, but just knowing that day is getting closer makes me cringe a little.

Our new house... Wait... where are the palm trees?!

As easily as our exit has been so far, our entrance to Virginia Beach is strangely already coming together as well. As in, we already found a place to rent through friends, from friends, right down the street from friends. Nick and I have both been in several of the units in this neighborhood before. They are very new and really nice. It won't have a yard (no mowing), but it has enough space for my one requirement... an herb garden. It also has a garage where we will be setting up our crossfit gym. I have been in touch with several friends in the area, and I'm excited to reunite with so many people we already know.

It was exactly a year ago this week that Nick came home with the news that Virginia Beach, not Coronado, may be the best next step for us. I spent the next few weeks, months moping about the change in plans. One year later, I find myself finally getting excited to be moving there. There are a few loose ends to tie up still. I haven't decided what I am going to do with Peyt's Island just yet. And I still have no idea what awaits me in terms of what I will be doing in my new place. But I have learned not to worry about such details. As the exit strategy continues rolling and the weeks keep flying, I'm doing my best not to get ahead of the calendar... to stay present in the present... to hold on to island time and float along in paradise as long as I can.


  1. That does not look like Ghent..... :( I'm glad that you found a good place to live near friends. We'd love to have you guys over for dinner after you get here, and if we can be of any help during your transition, please just ask!

    1. Hi Meghan! No, it's not Ghent. Nick is anti-commute, so that wasn't in the cards for us. But we would LOVE to come see your place and check out your awesome neighborhood! Thanks so much for the offer and I will definitely be in touch mid-October when we get in! Getting excited :)

  2. Sounds like it's all coming together :) Enjoy the rest of your time on Guam!

  3. This post choked me up a little bit. I'm appreciating the great memories we have in Asia together. We covered a lot of ground, huh? I'll miss having you on this side of the pond. Thanks for being such a good friend. =)

    Also, I'm suddenly nostalgic for American housing.

  4. So many memories, but SOOO excited to have you two closer! Can we start voting on both i) names for your new blog and ii) names for your sailboat (but I think you already have that one figured out)!


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