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I’ve always been a countdown-er. Fourteen weeks until the baby’s due date. Six weeks until Christmas. A month until vacation. Three days until the weekend.
For two weeks now, I’ve been counting down the days until May 6–my last day at the Chiefland Citizen.
Journalists, by their very nature, are transient.
We’re always looking for better jobs, better opportunities, better positions, better money.
Some of us make lateral moves and for a variety of reasons.
We have to be flexible. We have to adapt. We have to be able to move on a moment’s notice and bend with every change.
I did that four years ago when I came to Levy County, leaving everyone I knew and loved behind to forge a new life.
And now the time has come for me to move onward in the next leg of my career’s journey.
But unlike the happy joyous countdowns of times past, this countdown has been bittersweet.
I enjoy what I do here. I like the people I work with. The environment is as comfortable as a battered pair of blue jeans.
I have assembled a super intelligent editorial team–one that plays by the rules and enriches the pages of this newspaper each week with their respective talents and life experiences.There are no cookie cutters here. They are as individual as any snowflake and as shiny and magical too.
It won’t be the same after next week. There will be no Billy or Bob to razz me about sundaes; no Kitty to share her latest deer/cat/dog stories; no Becky to burst into a bluegrass melody on a whim; no Phoebe to cackle with delight at some outlandish tale; no Fred ready to please my editorial impulses and never question why.
I will miss them. I will miss them a lot.
For over two years they have been not only my co-workers but also my family.
I hope I have served the readers of the Citizen well in my time here.
I hope you consider this newspaper yours, because it is.
I hope that 10, 20, 30 years from now, you will still remember the stories we brought you under my editor’s pen–stories like Keegan Caudill, living with the scars–mental and physical–from Iraq; or Nadine Lewis, who at 90 keeps writing, singing and enjoying life to the fullest; or Corey Rogers, the cutest farrier around; or Lubcho Michevski, a heart-broken stranger in a foreign land.
On the other hand, I am excited about my new post and am eager to learn all I can about the new community I will serve and the people who make it what it is.
The company decided that it was time for two veteran journalists, each with different strengths to reallocate their assets and share what they know so more of the county benefits from their talent and expertise.
To that end, I am headed to Williston to edit the Pioneer and Jim Clark, who was editor here before me, will make a return appearance at the Citizen editorial desk.
So with the countdown on, and my days here numbered, this is the last column I will write as your editor.
I appreciate all the support I’ve been given, the trust you placed in me, the parts of you that you shared.
I will treasure those nuggets for years to come and will lock them away in a special part of my heart.
This is not goodbye. It is only adieu–until we meet again.
Thank you. I’ve enjoyed the ride.