I arrived home earlier this evening from my out-of-town training. The training sessions were wonderful. Great information. Incredible new friends. A corporation of people who really care about the quality of life of the residents in their facilities. I was impressed to hear it from the hearts of the CEO and the management team and to see that it trickled down throughout the organization. They were excited to meet us. We were treated like royalty. Like very special people. We were the fulfillment of a long-awaited dream. We were welcomed and thanked and appreciated and valued many times over. By the time we said goodbye each of us, the new chaplains, knew we were part of a team.
I am impressed with the quality and character of the other chaplains. We all come from different backgrounds yet we share so much in common. The desire to help meet the needs of the people we will serve. A bond formed between us in a very short time. We are looking forward to more time. We will keep in touch often through email. To share knowledge and information. Encouragement and support.
After our training sessions ended yesterday afternoon I checked into the hotel, changed my clothes and headed out for an adventure. I stopped to buy flowers and drove several miles to the beautiful cemetery where my sweetheart's mother and father were laid to rest. After I placed the flowers on their headstone I walked around through the family plot and reminisced about each of the sweet people who have gone on before us. A precious grandmother and grandfather. A dear aunt and uncle. Such a part of my life after my sweetheart and I were married. The cloud formations above were incredible. What a serene place to be after a busy day. Alone with my thoughts. And my memories.
I lived in the Eugene area for nearly five years when I was in Jr. High and most of High School. Last evening I drove around the area to see the 'old' places. The church where my father was the pastor. The tiny parsonage next door that was our home. (My dear mother planted that tree shortly after we moved there. It was so small!)I saw homes in the neighborhood where I spent many hours babysitting young friends. I remembered them as they were. I wondered where they are now. I drove around the community and found some of the homes where I spent special times with friends. Then a short distance to the school where I went through my Jr. High years.Not much had changed.The classroom areas brought back such memories. Corridors seemed to be filled once again with my friends from long ago.A ways farther I found the school where I spent most of my high school years. It is not the same. Completely different. A fire many years ago destroyed the wooden structure that housed the rooms where I spent so much time. The new building was placed on the property in a totally different pattern. The main entrance is on a completely different street than before. The old main entrance has been replaced by houses.A sports complex sits where the old classroom wings used to be. Nothing familiar remained. But one thing hadn't changed. The football field and stadium were exactly as I remembered them! They held so many memories. Friday nights in the stands, cheering for our team. Time spent with friends sharing a common goal. To see our team win!I will return to that area again for more training and chaplain team meetings. I have already planned my next adventure into the neighborhoods of my former hometown. A beautiful historic district filled with wonderful old homes. A venture out a ways to the home where my sweetheart lived as a toddler. To appreciate and enjoy the old places that were part of our lives. Places dear to our hearts. Filled with so many memories. Sweet memories.
Dear Adrienne, it sounds like you are going to love your new job. I am glad that you had time to relive all those memories and remember your loved ones. I so enjoy hearing about your childhood and getting to share a little bit of it with you:>)ReplyDelete
It sounds like you had an absolutely wonderful trip all around! New experiences mixed with a little nostalgia! I'm looking forward to hearing about your new adventures.ReplyDelete
Blessings and hugs!
I'm glad you're home and that the training sessions were so productive - often that's not the case. It's fun to visit places that had a hold on your heart. They take us back in time to memories of love and laughter. Blessings,
This turned out to be such a wonderful trip for you - full of new relationships and old memories.ReplyDelete
It is such a blessing to have a job that you love.
Hi Adrienne. I have been busy all week getting this virtual party oragnaized that I missed visiting you. I'll have to come back and get caught up. Hope you have agreat weekend.ReplyDelete
What a gentle and heartfelt post this is. Thank you for the stroll and sharing your memories.ReplyDelete
I'm thankful you were renewed and treated so nicely, at the conference. Thank you for answering the call of Christ in reaching out and being a blessing to others.
Adrienne this post is beautiful!ReplyDelete
I've returned to towns where I lived, growing up and try find the old places. Some are the same but many have changed.
Your visit to the cemetery sounds exactly the way I would have done it. There is something so serene about being there.
Have a wonderful weekend!
What a wonderful nostalgic tour for you Adrienne ad nice to share yur memories.ReplyDelete
I see you have been gone too. I also toured the old highschool I went to, it is now a jr. high. I remembered some things about the old school. It was fun to see it again!ReplyDelete
P.S. - I love the yellow Fenton gift you received!
Two yrs ago, our class celebrated our 50th year since graduation from high school...my friends and I did the exact same thing, drove around to all our old "haunts", houses, schools, skating rink, movie houses, drugstores....it was such a blast from the past and, if I would have let it, it could have been sad...it turned out just bittersweet until I saw the old house where I grew up...so many memories hit me right smack in the face and heart, I went weak-kneed for a bit...then, that night, my dreams were filled with my mom.....ReplyDelete
Thanks for your visit to my blog. Is this the Eugene and Springfield in Oregon? I've driven through and stopped to eat in both this cities on my many travels between Seattle and LA. Blessings on your chaplain job...