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Posted by pastol on 29 August 2017 - 07:20 PM
Before I retired, the company that I worked for had a very large what we called "Regional Office" in Charlottesville, VA. During a migration of our data centers from the Regional Offices to 3 hubs in the south (Atlanta, Dallas & Phoenix) I was assigned to coordinate the Charlottesville move. I got to know the people in the IT department (back then it was called DP) very well. They were a smart group. Well-oiled and the shop ran like a top. It was a fine mix of personalities and all of them very friendly people. They were kind and fun and always treated me like they'd known me forever. Right up to the day I retired I kept in touch with them. Often I'd call to run something by them to get a reaction. Corporate Headquarters was talking about implementing this or that and I'd call people in the "field" to get a feel for how it would directly affect them. Corporate was really good at that, coming up with ideas without thinking about how it would affect those people that were one step closer to our customers than we were. Charlottesville was more often than not the office I'd call.
I remember the town very well. Very small, the University of Virginia and the company that I worked for were probably the 2 largest employers in town. The town always struck me as a little economically depressed, but not overtly so. They did have a few cool restaurants in town that only the locals could tell you about. In spite of the school, there seemed to be no nightlife. But parts of the town were very pretty and the second you crossed that not so invisible line to out-of-town everything transformed into a scene of beauty that was breathtaking. Many times after dinner I'd get in the rental car and just drive, just taking it all in. I lived in Phoenix at the time. This was a wonderful escape from sand sand and more sand. The lush tree lines and rolling hills were calming and soothing. The air smelled good and people often waved at you for no reason at all. Just 2 travelers passing as the sun went down.
I went up to Monticello during one of my trips there. It was interesting but a bit unsettling as well. "These were the slave's cabins." Holy shit, they were like 10 x 10 shanties. I'd seen enough and never went back.
But all in all it was a very nice little town, nice people and some very good memories. I've tried very hard to disassociate all of the news lately from those memories. I want to remember the beauty of the place and the people that I knew there with a smile and that same feeling of warmth that I always felt previous to the brouhaha of recent days, all over statues. Can't that be discussed without the entire calamity? Evidently not. It is very disappointing to have a small group of people try to twist those memories. In time I will push those events to the back of my head. At the same time, I'd like to think that Heather Heyer's memory will live on. It will be a convoluted argument that will play out in my head for some time. In the end, hoping that her mother finds the peace that she deserves would be the best approach.
Posted by Navy on 09 November 2016 - 08:51 PM
P.S. Navy's avatar is at my house too... he was the chef for our labor day BBQ weekend. (rubbing the meat seemed to take him a very long time though if I recall... ).
I had to find this and dig it out of the archives. Holy crap - look how young (and thin) I was. And Tyler - the kitchen must bring you flashbacks!
Posted by pastol on 24 August 2014 - 09:43 PM
Three photos that I found on the Web today that I am excited about. The photos are very different but the majesty and "wow" factor in all three emanate from the same source. I will concede that in the first one, it is both the sun AND the rain at the same time that makes the shot so eye catching. The photographer made mention that through all of the rain, the sun was still shining and the net was catching it just right. There is much that can be said about the second one. Sunflowers turned brilliant by their own namesake. It is as if they are attempting to become one in the same. The petals ablaze from the sun shining through them, and the sun trying so hard to imitate them. The last one is my favorite. That's Mt. Rainier in the background. The colors are at once subdued and burning fiercely as if the lake is on fire. I bet the photographer wished for that moment to never end. Such a magical time of day to be out in the snow. No doubt the silence was deafening, and beautiful.