It was 14 Years Ago Today

Fourteen years ago today we moved to Fairfield. For me and Deb, that’s a just under a quarter of our lives but for the kids, it’s the majority of their life. At the time we moved, they were six and four and objected most strenuously to the move. After all, they were leaving their very best friends behind. (Both had at best one friend each at the time, more through circumstances at pre-school and kindergarten than anything else.)

They were resistant to the idea and the fact that they didn’t see the house in its entirety until the move didn’t help with the transition. Worse, timing being what it was, first grade was starting before the closing on the old and new homes could be completed. Deb’s brother Jim, who was living in town at the time, volunteered to house Kate so she wouldn’t miss the crucial first weeks. His wife Margaret happily took Kate to school and someone collected her in the afternoon. Every Friday, after work, Deb would schlep up to Connecticut to collect Kate for the weekend and return her on Sunday. We did our bedtime routine by phone during the week. It helped but it wasn’t ideal for anyone, especially after Margaret learned she was pregnant and needed some bed rest.

The closing in Connecticut was a dream (NY closing are a pain in the butt) and we did the walk through, discovering to our surprise the previous owners (whom we never met, an oddity of the home sale system in the state) had shut off all the utilities. We quickly had things turned on and the day before the move, Deb was supervising a cleaning crew to make the house shipshape for the move.

On moving day, the skies were ominous. Deb, the kids, the cat and the movers were headed north by lunchtime. The nanny Bonnie and I remained behind for the finally sweep of the premises and then, with the dog, also made the drive to our new home state.

By the time we arrived, the skies had opened up and stayed open as movers trudged through the house with boxes. Since we intended to finish the basement, we filled the living room from floor to ceiling with boxes, most of which were intended for the basement. The white carpet in the family room, despite our best efforts, grew brown and grey with mud and muck. The animals were locked away in the bathroom to avoid escaping or getting under foot. Both kids weren’t sure about their new home as we struggled to get their beds set up early.

My how times flies.

Today, we can’t go through town without recognizing people we know. Neither kid would dare suggest living anywhere else. We met friends through the Welcome Club we still socialize with and as you all know, I’ve gotten deeply involved via the RTM, Parking Authority, Cable Advisory Council and the Democratic Town Committee. Deb and the kids are active through the Church and she’s part of a knitting group that meets twice a month.

It’s all good and looking back, I’m certain we did the right thing for the family. Lynbrook always felt temporary for us and Fairfield always felt like home (even if I still can’t find my way around parts of town).