Blog fam cups handa to mouth and yells "Go head on somewhere with all this vacation talk, Oldgirl."
That was my 1st vacation as an adult.
I might be pontificating about it until deep into the heat of summer.
No, I have only a small bit of pontificating to do.
Now, what was nice about my trip was that it was part cruise, part New Orleans.
I lived in New Orleans from November 1998 to August 2001.
So, it was nice to run around seeing some of my friends. I wasn't able to catch up with all the ones I wanted to see, but I saw quite a few peeps, and that's cool.
Anyway, I swung by my old workplace out on the Lakefront, the U.S. dept. of Agricul.ture.
My beloved eS.R.R.C. My first job out of grad school. I was research chemist, doing a 2 year fellowship, making $37,500.00 a year. (You couldn't tell me I wasn't rich. LOL!! As if!!)
When I left this place, and headed back for Atlanta, I kicked the doors open wide, loaded my stuff in the car and got the hell on. I promised myself that I would NEVER go back there.
Me and another black post-doc use to stand out on the front steps of the building and just KNOW that if them fools could swang a rope around our necks and hang us from those trees, they most definitely would have... without the least bit of hesitation.
Yeah, we hated that place, and they hated us. This is when I knew I was BLACK for real.
Once I left, I was never going back. EVER.
I disliked that place so much, that every Monday morning, I would send out, over email, the most sarcastic poem, a sort of "ode" to the place. It was a page long, and we ALL looked forward to my poetic ponderings of what had happened around the building the week before. It was a subscription of sorts, and I shopped it all around the building to whoever would read it.
Just so we all could get a good laugh on Monday mornings.
(Far be it from me to know that this was some type of prehistoric "blog" activity. LOL)
Those were the good ol' days. Days I was HAPPY to leave behind.
But I had friends in the building.
Now, I hadn't been there in eight years. But when I went up there, it was like I was a modern day celebrity or something.
"It's Dr. LadyLee!
"Oh Lawd! Dr. LadyLee is in the Building!!!!"
"For true! She is in the building!!!!!!!!!!"
But I liked it.
People showing up from nowhere, running down the hall, gathering around me.
I got so many hugs.
I saw many peoples 32 teeth, that's for sure.
Didn't realize how many people think of me after so many years.
How many people truly think very highly and very well of me.
I got a chance to see one of my mentors from back then. We were in the same work group, and it was just something else to be around Maureen, a sista who had a lot of experience. Man, she was the type of chick that when she walked by, you wanted to just stand to the side in reverence and look at the ground.
Maureen wasn't a chemist like myself, but a microbiologist/bacteriologist. I am bootleg, so I picked up a lot of microbiology skills from her. (Hey, show me how to do that!!!). I can say that I have a microbiology background because of her.
I also learned from her that you don't have to broadcast how bad you are. You don't have to carry a "Dr." sign over your head. When you are bad, you just bad!!!
When you got juice, it don't take all that. You got juice, and er'body around you KNOW it.
This was the best lesson I learned from one of the smartest, most humblest sistas on the planet.
I saw so many people.
Walked halls that I thought I would NEVER EVER walk again in my life. It was all surreal.
But best of all...
And what made this vacation PERFECT:
I got a chance to see and hang out with one of the top 3 people who have had a profound impact on shaping me into the person that I am
And who I hope to be in the future.
I tell her that, but man oh man...
I don't think she FULLY will ever understand the IMPACT she has on me.
She has been like, a God-sent example for me... someone who I aim and strive to be like.
Someone who I have learned SO much from on the intangible tip.
Someone who, whenever I talk to her, I walk away a MUCH better person.
Mi buen amigo "Gigi".
For you none spanish speaking folks, that translates: "One of the most wonderful people in the world, my good friend "Gigi"."
And she deserves a post all unto herself.
To be continued.