My autographed Ring of Honor Bob Lilly print is up on the wall in my study. The Staubach-Aikman football has found its place under glass in the center of my bookshelves. The Tex Schramm card, the Rangers nesting dolls, and Jerry Plemons’ praying hands from Israel are resting in their designated spots. It looks right.
I’ve learned to navigate the 19-different staircases that get me from the offices down to Sneed Hall without getting lost. When I get to the top or bottom of each landing, I still have to pause and look both ways to get my bearings. But I’m not getting lost anymore.
Vickie is comfortable enough with me to have reclaimed her seat around the tables in the Upper Room. She had to wake up early today, fight through the traffic on I-27, and beat me up the stairs. But she did it. Now I’m looking for a new chair. I’ve been told I can have any of them. Except one.
I can run down the streets now in my mind, in order, without even thinking about it: Soncy, Coulter, Bell, Western, etc., all the way to church and back. Steve and Judy have shown me every single Sonic in Amarillo. I’ve eaten at the Whataburger on Georgia Street.
I own and proudly wear an Amarillo High School Sandies T-shirt.
Valerie has a new pair of cowboy boots.
I’ve spent enough time now with my co-ministers to start feeling comfortable. The fact that Matt wears a hair band and Greg doesn’t wear socks seems normal to me now. I’ve gotten used to Tanner’s Tarheels hat and Mary’s love for the Red Sox. I enjoy the fact that I’m not the loudest member of this ministry team; Adam is by far the loudest human being I’ve ever been around. If I need to find Mark before 8:30 in the morning I call Calico County. If we start talking about sports, I know that Kevin will leave the room; if we start talking about anything else, I know that Kevin is likely to break out into song. And that seems right. When Bob speaks, everybody listens. And when I need help with my computer or my printer or the network or anything else that plugs into the wall, I scream for Hannah. And when all I needed to do was simply follow an on-screen prompt or replace an ink cartridge, she won’t tell anybody.
I may never get totally used to the smell when the winds are out of the southwest. I will probably never embrace all the Texas Tech stuff around here. And there’s no way I’ll ever possibly meet and keep straight all the people who are related to Mark & Gina Love. But Amarillo is beginning to feel like home.
The wonderful, generous, patient, kind people here are making it really easy.