Big City Dreams and a Shoe Box Full Of Cups

My oldest has settled into the big city nicely. It was just a week ago that she moved into her apartment on the Upper East Side of New York for her 15-week college internship. As far as I know, she’ll be working for a small publishing house going over manuscripts. Maybe editing them? I wasn’t too sure on the details and I don’t think she was either. Regardless, she seems to be settled into her place and exploring with another group of interns. She’s sent pics of Chinatown, the Brooklyn Bridge, and I believe Central Park. The actual work will begin next week, so she’s making the most of her time before responsibility settles in.

It’s strange sending your kid off to the big city. Up until this point she still seemed like a kid, going off to college in the fall, coming home for breaks, and then moving her back in the summer to work until the cycle began again in late August. But since we moved her home in November, knowing that in January she’d be relocating to New York City for 15 weeks, it’s felt different. Our oldest truly felt older to me. We felt like a temporary layover to adult life. I’m not getting all maudlin here or anything. I’m not sad about it. It’s just this strange sense of a real shift in both her life and ours as parents. If she makes the most of it out there, this could be one of those stepping stone moments. That’s pretty exciting to think, actually…

I’ve been re-watching the series Halt And Catch Fire.

If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a fictionalized story about the personal computer boom of the early 80s and it concerns this small group of people in Dallas at an electronics company. One is the big idea person, while the other is the builder of these ideas, and the last is the coder that wants to make something people can connect with. Their stories and their lives are fiction, but they intermingle with big names like IBM, Apple, Microsoft, Tandy, and Nintendo. It’s a drama about these dreamers and how their worlds come together, fall apart, and come back together again over the course of ten years.

This series was and is one of my favorite shows ever. It moved my wife and I, both in how these characters grow on you despite their sometimes questionable behavior and in seeing their journeys through their careers in technology. It’s exciting seeing them toil over their first portable computer and writing an interactive OS that asks you questions(unheard of in 1983.) You totally get pulled into their worlds; both their successes and failures in business and in their personal lives.

I actually began re-watching the series the morning my daughter left for New York. I didn’t think much about it because I’d been considering jumping back into Halt and Catch Fire for awhile now. But for some reason, that morning felt like the right time. Watching these characters and their journeys, well I guess there’s a parallel to my own daughter’s recently started journey. She’s not building computers, but she is out there looking for something. A line to a career, or a dream she’s not yet aware of just yet. I hope she finds passion in something in the Big Apple. Something that ignites a fire in her belly that pushes her towards something. That thing that will be the driving force for the rest of her life.

Or at the very least, have a hell of a time trying to find it.

The morning she left a box of her cups and mugs was left on the kitchen table. I was amazed at the thought of what we amass over years. Things that seem important or useful at the time, that end up being discarded in the end. Sometimes in a cupboard to collect dust, and sometimes in an old shoe box left behind when room is a high commodity.

Whether cups or coats or people we no longer see or grow away from, there’s always something left behind. Sometimes it’s for our best mentally and emotionally, and sometimes it’s just what’s needed to make room for the next chapter.

I put that shoe box full of cups downstairs with a few other things my oldest couldn’t bring along. You never know, that Avengers cup may come in hand. Like it did for many years. It’ll be here at home waiting for her when she may need it again. Cause you never know when something like that will come in handy.



9 thoughts on “Big City Dreams and a Shoe Box Full Of Cups

  1. That is nice that you are keeping that stuff for her. My parents were packrats and could never bring themselves to throw stuff away. When I moved out they made me take everything that was “mine”. I gave or threw most of it away for them, lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Man, that hurts reading that. Truly. I mean, what kid at church is gonna play with Skeletor or Battle Cat?

      My stuff was pristine and still in their boxes until they made it back to me. My kids loved them. Unfortunately their value is no more. But hey, we had a blast with them.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is all so relatable, truly powerful stuff. Good luck to your daughter in her adventures – she’s gonna kick ass out there in the world! Of course, I can’t help but personalize this, think about my own kids (now 11 and 9), wondering when and where they’ll eventually go, what they’ll choose to do. I’m gonna be a terrible empty-nester ha!

    Liked by 1 person

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