An embarrassment of riches. That's all I can say about my time at WKAR and that last wonderful week. And the riches weren't just the celebrations. It was mostly the people.
I've been "at liberty" now for a full week, having a glorious time making art up north. It seems odd to not be with this gang of people every day! This is most of our team (boss Katie and colleague Stacy had to leave the work goodbye lunch a little early for another meeting!)
I had the opportunity to be on our "Current State" show, as I mentioned in the last post. Joe and Aaron were behind the scenes!
This is Mark Bashore, our host! I had known Mark long before he came to work at WKAR.
On Thursday, the station hosted a lovely reception for me. It was coordinated by Carol (left) and our GM, Gary Reid (far right, with his partner Pat), but lots of people helped!
My very first GM, Bob Page, was there, too!
And our current station manager, Susi Elkins. I've known Susi since she was a student working at the station! She's come a long way, and no one deserves it more!
The group included volunteers and friends, like Susan Affholter, Carol Welch and Jim DeLine. All are longtime friends, volunteers and lifelines!
So many colleagues (past and present) came, and so did good friends -- book club friends, wine friends, my "great group" (or GGs). All held my hand and were there during my illness, stress, whatever was making me crazy at the moment. And I know they will again.
Mike Hughes is our TV critic. He works nationally for Gannett, so if you are in a Gannett paper, you may have read his words! I've read a lot of them!
Two of my most recent work colleagues, Stacy and Kim, were there too -- it's so nice to know that when you leave someplace, you leave it in good hands! I'm only sorry I won't be able to work with them as closely from now on.
And here's something special... we went into the restaurant in the rain. Soon after, someone came in and said, "Have you seen the rainbow?" It was a full rainbow -- I didn't see the double, but someone else said they saw a double rainbow, too! I think that's a good sign!
The last day was filled with the Jeanie Goodbye Tour. I won't share all the photos for that but let me say, it was hard to say goodbye to friends. Raysha, our student, made me a wonderful farewell gift -- a jar filled with my bucket list wishes and lots more activities, for that day when you wonder, "What shall I do today?" I loved it!
That night, our old Quonset Hut gang got together -- these are those I've known the longest (since WKAR was located in the original Quonset huts on MSU's campus) and with whom I worked the most intensely.
. It was hosted by Tim (my office brother) and his wife, Sara, here with their daughter Meghan.
I've known Mike Lewis forever. He made a wonderful collection of "posters" where he photoshopped Rick and me into lots of fun things.
I can't decide if this is my favorite...
Or this one!
Gypsy readers have met Mark and Jan before at our Easter Egg dying gigs. Mark was one of the very first people I met.
Mike Mihalus and I spent a lot of time together as he produced pledge breaks. I hope he'll still invite me now and then!
Nancy Kelly and Bill Kinney were part of the original group, too. I can't imagine having had a life at WKAR without them.
After the first party, the night before, Rick and I had dinner in the restaurant where the party was located. This is the photo I took there, rather hurriedly. Yes, it's a boo boo photo -- but I think all the lights summarize those last few days -- filled with light, love, friends, happiness...
And all a blur!