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good news

August 11, 2006

Two years ago, my stepfather took a job with a company that promptly transferred him to a city over 500 miles away from where he and my mother had been living.

It was good job and a good opportunity and a good company, so everyone took many deep breaths and agreed that putting up with this move for a year or so would be a good thing. I say a year or so because the company told him that they thought a spot might open up for him in their home city within a year. He wanted to work for the company, so agreed to suck it up. Sometimes you put up with uncomfortable or unpleasant things because you know the payoff at the end will be so much better.

Since they moved, my mother and stepfather have been waiting for that payoff. And waiting. And waiting. And waiting. A few months ago, the company asked my stepfather to take on a different position, overseeing multiple locations, and we all thought that was the beginning of the payoff. They said that after six months to a year, he could relocate back to their home city and continue overseeing those locations, since he had to fly everywhere anyway. So he took that on, and flew around five days a week, being a good manager, and always going home to that far away city, because the payoff was still in the future, if a little further away.

A few weeks ago, my stepfather stepped down from that position and took back his old job, still in that far away city. The travel wasn’t working. He missed the people he worked with. His skills were not being used effectively. For a variety of very good reasons, he was back at square one. But this time, the payoff was not guaranteed. The company just couldn’t make that promise anymore. My mother and stepfather were looking at (at least) another year in the far away city, and maybe more than that. They were sad, we were sad, everyone was sad. That far away city was different and in many ways unwelcoming to them, and they did not want to be there any more. Except that my stepfather really liked his job and the company he worked for. So they agreed to stay there.

Today, my stepfather found out, totally out of the blue, that he is being transferred again–but this time, back home! The payoff has arrived and, in the way such delightful things often arrive, it did so in a big whoosh. He has to be back there in a week! My mother is figuring out how they can break their lease. My brother is looking for houses for them. My sister has called her realtor friends. My family is getting to move back home.

It’s about time.

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