To the Editor:
Hello Slave Lake! (Yes, I did put an unnecessary exclamation mark and yes, I would like my former editor to keep it there).
I’m writing this letter to you from my new newsroom in Lindsay, Ontario. It’s a lovely +5 outside and the sun is shining. I swear I heard someone mention how frigid the winter air is, to which I shook my head at the thought of what you northerners may be experiencing as far as the cold goes.
It’s been a hectic few months for your old Leader reporter, making the 4,000 km trip home was no easy mission. But, adjusting back to life in Ontario has been a whole other obstacle to tackle. Firstly, it’s the people here…they just don’t have the small-town charm that I became accustomed to during my two-year stint in Slave Lake. Secondly, I can’t seem to find any place that shapes up to The Fix’s egg salad. It’s been a disappointing few months as far as that goes. Whenever I get the chance, I always make sure to let people know about Alimos’ pizza and the fantastic spread at the annual Malanka celebration.
I was able to secure a position writing a for big wig media company called Metroland – Google it and you may be impressed. I’m responsible for ‘hard news’ and a little sports coverage here and there. I think your Leader editor would be proud. The odd time I still find myself hankering for some good old Slave Lake community reporting though.
My departure from town happened rather quickly which meant I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye to everyone I wanted to. It probably was the best end scenario, as there are just far too many of you to thank individually. You all brought this city-slicker under your wing and that’s something I will never lose sight of. It was a life-changing experience, moving from one side of the country to the other, completely alone, but somehow Slave Lakers made me feel like I had a family out there.
I have an inkling I wouldn’t have lasted so long without my work-family and friends I made while serving on your regional arts council. I hear they have a new president and she’s doing great things in the community (perhaps give her some well-deserved recognition at this year’s volunteer appreciation dinner).
And that’s it for now folks. I’m sure Joe and your Leader team will be plugging away at filling the latest edition, so I won’t make this too much longer. In conclusion,
I’d just like to say again how thankful I am for everything – the family dinners, the friends, the neat adventures, the culture, the community, I’ll miss it all.