Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Mayor Randy

It was Mayor Randy’s birthday a couple of days ago. I called him, got his voicemail, and sang my best Marilyn Monroe version of Happy Birthday Mr. Mayor. Well, not really, but I did call and sing Happy Birthday.

In my ever elusive quest to get organized, I was sorting through some old pictures and came across these. I was flooded with the memory of this trip. And I thought I would share it with you. First – the background…

It was a couple of months before we were scheduled to leave office. The Mayor had decided that he would not run for re-election. And given the nature of politics, I knew the incoming Mayor would choose his own staff. So, the Mayor happened upon some VIP tickets to see a shuttle launch. We all took vacation time, anted up the airfare, and off we all went on a Griswold Family Vacation like none other. Who would have put together this unlikely group? An engineer, attorney, cheerleader, a fake poop salesman, and a human resource specialist? I am going to leave it to you to decide who was who. We arrived in Florida on a Wednesday ahead of a Friday morning launch.

Our first adventure on Thursday was to head over to the Kennedy Space Center. It was here that we saw a really great 3D movie about space.

Sonya and I thought it was a fabulous movie ~ the Mayor slept through it.

Friday came and we got news that the launch was delayed and they were going to shoot for Saturday morning. So we decided to head over to Orlando and went through Universal Studios. It was there that the two most famous Mayors met, Mayor Randy Fitts of South Salt Lake, and Mayor Augustus Maywho of Whoville.

Everywhere we went Craig wore shorts with black socks… what is up with black socks? We totally made fun of him the whole time. I mean seriously….

Saturday morning came and the shuttle was delayed again. They thought they might get an afternoon launch. As the day went on, we knew it wasn’t going to happen. We all piled into the white cargo van and headed for Miami. How much more Griswold could we be? We played car games. We played “I am going on a trip. And on this trip I am bringing (insert something here that starts with an A)”. Then the next person says “I am going on a trip and I am bringing…” and they must recite all the previous contestants entries and their entry with the next letter of the alphabet. If you forget one of the entries, then you are out of the game. I think that Kyle won. But I do know that the Mayor cheated a couple of times. We recited that laundry list of things we were going to bring on the trip several times throughout the trip.

It was Craig’s keen memory that landed us here at Joe’s Stone Crabs in Miami. This restaurant is certainly not to be confused with the chain restaurant. It was a pretty hoity toity kind of a restaurant. Randy left his 7-11 Big Gulp cup in the lobby.

We walked the streets of Miami, and the beaches. We did a little beachcoming, butts up in the air, and saw a little bit of sand sculpting. The Mayor even picked me a coconut off a real live coconut tree.

Then it was off back to the hotel. Craig was the designated driver of the van, however, when he started nodding off, I took the helm. Sonya was the co-pilot and map reader extraordinaire. We made it back to Orlando with three sleeping men in the back seat. We were lost. We couldn’t find our hotel. Lordy almighty. I think we drove around for 30 minutes before one of the guys woke up and guided us back to the hotel.

What a great adventure to watch The Shuttle Launch That Wasn’t. I cherish the time that I spent working for the Mayor. It was by far and away the best job I have ever had. And he indeed was the best boss I have ever had.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

What Do Trees Say?

I have a fond memory of meeting a guy (who is now a very dear friend) for the first time. We met at a park right here in Bountiful. You know how first time meetings go... I was a little nervous. We sat in the park and were talking. It was a lovely late summer evening. The wind was whistling through the trees.

**Point of note, I have always loved trees. Perhaps this stems from my time in Brigham City's Parks and Recreation Department where we nurtured and planted trees to become Tree City USA....ya, maybe that was it...**

meanwhile back at the park.... As we talked about the trees, I was really surprised that he had never really thought about trees in the way that I always have... that they are a living, breathing, beautiful part of this earth. They dance, they sing, they weep, they shed, they have their spirit renewed. It was a lovely first meeting for my friend and I and we often reminisce about that day and what he learned about trees.

What does my beautiful 50 year old sycamore tree say to you?

She is saying, "aren't I blessed! Look at me waving in the wind, bending in allowance for whatever comes my way. Rustling my leaves in perfect harmony....and I am smiling, can't you tell? I am dancing with my friend the wind".

Why yes she is....