Two adults, on the floor, ugly crying.

When my husband and I got the official word we were being transferred to Houston from New Mexico eleven years ago we both sat down in the floor and cried.  Really.  We did.

Two grownups, on the floor, ugly crying.

I repeatedly implored my Texas-hating husband not to judge my beloved home state by Houston.  Tearfully, I would tell him, “Everyone knows Houston isn’t really part of Texas.  It’s even worse than Dallas.”

We worried.  We stressed.  We looked for a way out. But, our paycheck was waiting, so eventually we moved.

Our first night in our new neighborhood a lady shot her husband and our street filled with flashing blue lights.

Two grownups, on the floor, ugly crying.

Gradually though, something began to happen.

It probably started the first time we went to get our oil changed and the guy running the shop, Dave,  befriended us.

“If you folks ever need anything just give us a call.  Somewhere to eat Sunday dinner-anything at all.”

Was Dave crazy? A big city maniac we should fear? A danger we needed to avoid?  We thought all of this while smiling politely and positioning ourselves between him and our daughter.

It turns out he wasn’t.  He was just a typical Houstonian.  Friendly and big hearted.  Always willing to help and always looking out for those around him.

We have met many, many “Daves” in the eleven years we have been here.  The neighbors who folded us into their own holidays when we were too far away to spend them with family.  The random man who stopped and helped us carry a new stove into our house. I’m especially thankful for him because our marriage was about to end over how to get that darn thing out of the truck bed. The sweet lady down the street who remembers my husband every year when she makes Gumbo and sends him huge tupperware containers of golden, savory goodness.

Houston, the fourth largest city in the United States, is populated with good folks and we love them.

In fact,  we are smitten with our entire city.

We love the air that drips and the first signs of Magnolia trees blooming every year. We love warm palm-tree Christmases and that we can go five minutes in any direction and find “slap yo’ mama” good food.  We love our Texans and our brown water beaches.  We love the guys on air-boats rescuing people from flooded homes and we love being surrounded by folks willing to risk their own lives to save horses caught in the water.

We are, in every way that matters, Houstonians.  May we always, always live up to the name and may we never ever be transferred.

I have no problem imagining what it would look like if we were.

Two adults, on the floor, ugly crying.


4 thoughts on “Two adults, on the floor, ugly crying.

  1. I enjoy your turn of a phrase even more than I like living here. I still prefer to say I live in Klein as opposed to claiming Houston; I think it’s the pine trees that capture me. When it was my turn to react to the “we’re transferring to Houston” news 25 years ago, I came, kicking and screaming. Just me on the floor, not two of us! I’d already lived in Katy a year and then tasted small-town living afterwards. I didn’t want to raise our daughter in the city! But we survived, we thrived… and we met wonderful people like your family. Your writing brings great satisfaction, dear friend.


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