Nov 152017
 

I was thinking on the drive home tonight about an old friend. (Well, maybe she’s “someone I used to know” now. We haven’t had any contact in 12 or so years.) She and her husband moved to Colorado a few years ago. I don’t know whether it was for a job, or for the excitement of it, or some other reason. She’s got roots here, though, including family—so it wasn’t without trade-offs.

I thought about the adventures to be had in both urban and rural Colorado. Then I considered for a moment how blessed I feel to be in northern Alabama—to have a career here, to be raising a family here.

I arrived at age 15, with my father, in August 1986. The population of Huntsville has grown a good bit since then, but the population of the metropolitan area has doubled. We are rapidly closing on half a million people. It’s a significantly larger city than the one I moved to. Yet I’ve grown with it. I’ve called myself a native for 20 years or so now, and it still feels like my home.

A lot of the blessings are easy-to-measure metrics. The crime rate is low. The cost of living is low. The job market is excellent. I have a choice of good Vietnamese and Thai restaurants. A big one for me, though, is more abstract:

There are several things I still want to do in my life, and I can effectively do them here.

I haven’t exactly considered them dreams, or wishes, or anything else—they’ve just been things I think I’d like to do. Well, it’s time to call them goals. It’s time to codify them. It’s time for me to identify manageable chunks that I can check off. It’s time for me to clear obstacles (some of which have been obvious to me for some time yet I dared not call them by name).

I’ve made racket like this to myself before. I know it’s different this time because I’m much more excited than I’ve ever been.

I’ll keep you posted.

 Posted by at 12:33 am
Apr 242017
 

Here is a much better look at what we’re getting for our trade-in of Madison Square Mall to the universe. (If I figure out whether the video can be embedded later, I will.)

No doubt this looks very appealing, and it’s amazing how well they can bring it to life with current technology, isn’t it?

If this project really is going forward, then it’s reasonable to presume that solid market research supports the decision to build and open it. It certainly does seem like a bunch at one time for the area, though. (And Lea wondered about parking. Good question.)

Now we need a monorail circuit, using existing rights-of-way wherever possible (which really should be most of the route), connecting MidCity Huntsville, the Convention & Visitors’ Bureau, Parkway Place, Lowe Mill, Huntsville Botanical Garden, the new development at Gate 9, the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, and Bridge Street.

I have done a detailed cost analysis of this monorail and determined to my complete satisfaction that it will cost more than I have to give to fund such a project.

However, there are many people in Huntsville with more than $90, and I’d think they’d be highly approachable to help fund such a tremendous and technological legacy for the technological center in which they made their fortunes. I mean, I’ve listed eight stops. What should the naming rights for those cost? What about the legs between them? What about the trains themselves? What about the project in general? That’s closing on two dozen super-donors right there…

 Posted by at 10:31 am
Apr 042017
 

When I was 12 years old, I don’t remember what I said I wanted to be when I grew up. I remember what my classmate Shannon said, though. He wanted to be a bulldozer owner/operator. He had it all worked out. He was going to get a secondhand dozer, live in a trailer, and work […]

 Posted by at 2:45 pm
Mar 082017
 

“Building success with words takes investment. We wanted to create an atmosphere where that investment will begin or will expand.” My friend and fellow writer Kathryn Lang chairs the inaugural Mountain Valley Writers Conference, an upcoming event in Guntersville. The event, for writers at all levels, will offer guidance on social media, digital marketing, independent publishing, […]

 Posted by at 8:13 pm

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