Friday, June 19, 2009
......and they're off
So after months of working very hard to dig out from under the consequences of adolescent behavior, Archie graduated a couple of weeks ago and yesterday he and his buddy, Brent, and their cat, Jaeger, hit the road.
The truth is that there isn't much in a small town like this to hold young people and all that Archie seemed able to find for a while was trouble. And, once he found trouble, trouble found him and once that happened it was a spiral that was not leading anywhere good. He put a lot of work into turning it around and showed more courage in changing behavior than I would have at his age but the die was cast, he needed to get out of town.
His plan had always been not to have a plan--just to drive until he ran out of gas money and then stop, pitch a tent and work until there was enough money for a few more tanks of gas but as the time got closer a plan started to emerge.
Archie's big brother is an engineer in central Pennsylvania with one of the coolest jobs ever. He does inspections on bridges while hanging from a harness or diving under water and checks out metal in all sorts of other situations that appeal to young men and scare the heck out of their mothers. He asked Archie if he would like to move down there and live and work in their large college town with the possibility of training to assist with some of the inspections. That call came on a day in late April when all of us needed a boost. Archie's latest brush with trouble had been in the newspaper in an article that had crushed us both with the unfairness of the reporting and the implications. So, the call from Ethan in Pennsylvania tossed out a lifeline.
Yesterday was the day and there were nothing but smiles to be seen around here. Well, there was one very anxious little tiger cat who was afraid of being left.
Good luck, guys. Be safe, be happy and remember to call home.