Saturday, February 5, 2011

Magical Moment 366, "Useful in More than Just Traffic"

Here’s a cliché for you - going to a mall on a Saturday night in Jersey. Just one more way, in addition to my regular Dunkin Doughnuts coffee and uncharacteristically bold driving moves, I’m feeling more at home in this town 15 miles west of Manhattan. In the passenger seat beside me, helping me conquer the congested, cut-throat mall parking lot in search of a vacant spot, is my old Army friend, Ro. Together, we maneuver through swarms of pedestrians, slippery roads, and some very questionable drivers on our quest to see  a movie this evening.  

People wonder sometimes why on earth I moved out here to northern New Jersey, without friends, family, or a job. The short answer is, I’m here to pursue a music career in New York City. But the truth is, I never thought about New York City until 2 years ago when Ro planted the idea into my head. I’ll never forget the shock I felt when she said she believed I had enough talent to find work out here. If not for her suggestion and encouragement, I would very likely be in Nashville, Austin, or Atlanta. To me, New York was the ultimate music city, and something I could never shoot for. And after I finally got the gall to make the move, and after searching tirelessly through all five boroughs for an affordable apartment, I ended up less than 2 miles from Ro’s hometown.

When she’s back in town, we swap Army stories, eat, and catch up on life. And each time, I’m reminded of what friendship is. Support. Loyalty. Encouragement. Advice. Honesty. In the difficult Army days, she was a friend and a leader, and helped me navigate through the confusion and frustration that threatened my sanity. In my musical ambition, I would be hard pressed to find a more dedicated believer. I can see clearly what a key role true friendship has played in my life and will play in my future. And tonight, after the New Jersey traffic has beat me up, and I again feel defeat and weariness, I hear Ro shout with urgency and triumph, “Right there!!! There’s an empty one!!!” I swerve into the parking space thinking, “Phew. Thank God for Ro.”

Ro promoted me to Captain in October 2008

1 comment:

Anonymous said...


I can't tell you how much fun it was serving in the Army with you these last few years! From tag teaming piano gigs at Women's History Month to Karoke Night/Spaghetti Night with the girls!! I know it was tough those last few months, but you have always been so resilient and dedicated to your craft. I'm so happy and proud to call you friend.

I always love it when you blog about home...because here in Kentucky where there are self-serve Dunkin' Donuts (that sounds almost criminal)--nothing is better than hearing about you picking up the "usual" at the DD's by your house.

Keep working hard and know that I always have and always will believe in you!!

Great catching up and grabbing a movie the other night too!!! You are the Garden State Plaza Mall Parking Extraordinaire!!!