If Mr. Riley reads this, he will laugh at the way I start this post…
On April 8, 1979, I moved to Cullman, Alabama. We had bought what I thought was the cutest white Cape Cod style house that I had ever seen. I was so excited to move away from people we knew and grow up and be the Terri I was meant to be. I was 25 years old.
A few days before moving day, I went to Cullman to sign papers to close the loan on our new grown-up house. When I made the right turn from Highway 157 onto Highway 31, I was at the top of a hill overlooking what would become “home”. I can never find the right words to describe the way I felt at that moment but I was alone in my car, moving to a town where I knew no one other than the husband that I had married less than a year before. I was overcome with the feeling of “home”.
This past weekend, I made a quick trip home to Cullman. This visit, I didn’t feel sad. I wasn’t nostalgic for the “old days”. I just felt like I was “home”. I will probably never live in Cullman again. Whether or not I live there, the fact that Cullman is “home” remains. This trip, I went to a lot of the old favorite places, 1317 5th St SE, the duck pond, CRMC, the old church building, Wal-Mart (:)) I washed my car at the old car wash, it was a good afternoon. I ran into several friends while shopping (one thing hasn’t changed – I detest shopping at Belk in Cullman) and I realized that even though Cullman is a special town for me, the people are the most special. The old group of friends isn’t together anymore. So many things at the hospital have changed, I wouldn’t have the same job. I never felt “at home” at the new church building. The people. Those are the people I love and will always love.
I lived there from April, 1989 to June 2008 and I grew, failed, cried, and laughed my way into a family.
I told my friend, Donna, that I loved Cullman, but it wasn’t Cullman that I love – although, it IS Cullman that I love – it’s the people – not JUST the people… :) You get the idea, her eyes rolled a little, too.
It’s good to have a place to call home here on the planet. I’m glad to get my cup filled with “home”, but I’m looking forward to my forever home. When I get there, I hope there is a place to get All-Steak Orange Rolls!