But I got addicted… and after that first time, I decided to officially change my format of writing about you, to where I write to you.
Exactly a year has passed since that night I sat at our coffee table and cried so hard, realizing my love for you.
Tonight, I’m less emotional in that sense. Instead, I’m feeling fully grounded in how I feel about you and how I understand my love for you.
Instead of a groundbreaking ephiphany, today I simply am grateful for the gift of peace of mind and heart; a gift the world can not give.
In this moment, that is my life. I think of that song, “On Top Of The World” by Imagine Dragons, to describe how I feel about you and me:
“I’m on top of the world, ‘ay
Waiting on this for a while now
Paying my dues to the dirt
I’ve been waiting to smile, ‘ay
Been holding it in for a while, ‘ay
Take you with me if I can
Been dreaming of this since a child
I’m on top of the world.”
At the risk of coming across as a “selfie” pic obsessed guy, I’m delivering what I promised to you yesterday (more pictures of my trip) in my letter entitled, “Say Nice Things About Detroit.”
You know my general rule; I basically refuse to have my picture taken these days unless you and/or Mommy is in it with me. It just seems weird for a 32 year-old dad to be taking pictures of himself and posting them on the Internet…
But a picture of myself is justified when taken with my family.
Unless… I happened to be on a scavenger hunt hosted by OnStar and Buick, where in order to get credit for each event, I needed my picture taken with the OnStar logo to prove I was actually there, then Tweet it to the judges of the competition…
In that case, I guess I look less weird… or maybe it’s just my excuse this time.
So for the scavenger hunt, the dozen or so of us bloggers needed to pair up, and then hop in either a Buick Regal or Lacrosse, and accomplish as many tasks as we safely (and legally) could within the following two hours. Each task was worth an appropriate amount of points, based on difficulty.
It was only natural that the two dad bloggers teamed up. So my buddy was Fred Goodall of the blog, Mocha Dad. We named ourselves, “Team Dad.”
Fred was clever enough to think, “Let’s just do the challenges that are worth the most points first, then worry about the other ones if we have time.”
So we did.
Given that Fred has a smart phone and I don’t, I became the driver and Fred became the navigator and researcher. It helped tremendously that our Buick had OnStar on it, so I just pressed the button each time I had a new destination, and the friendly person on the other line helped me figure out which place I was trying to go, then instantly sent the directions to the built-in GPS.
It was all a blur at the time- and it still is. Actually, all you or I have to really go on are these pictures.
So appparently, Fred and I had to do our impression of the Detroit Tiger statue. And then I blocked in a competitors’ Buick while they were getting their picture made with it.
I ended up at Fisher Theatre where Mamma Mia! was evidently the answers to one of the clues.
How did “Team Dad” know the answer to that trivia question? We happened to see “Team Mom” take their picture with the poster… that’s how!
Then there was our visit to the all new Whole Foods in Detroit, where I first learned the slogan, “Say Nice Things About Detroit.” We picked up some organic food (untainted by Monsanto) then donated it to Gleaners Community Food Bank.
No, we didn’t win the scavenger hunt.
But I know we had a lot of fun driving in our classy ride across Motor City, doing random stuff a dad doesn’t normally get to do.
Most of all, I loved getting to discover the real Detroit (not the version reported by media).
Sure, along the way, I saw the “burned out buildings,” but they were alongside new ones; with growing new businesses.
It sort of reminded me of a baptism by fire- the new life is growing where the old one has faded away.
And perhaps accidently, the folks at GM and Buick used the journey of this scavenger hunt to show me the journey that Detroit is undergoing.
I’m so serious. I proudly stand behind Detroit.
Before this trip, I just didn’t realize what was actually going on- that in reality, Detroit is rebuilding, not crumbling.
Yesterday I changed my Facebook banner to the picture of the “Say Nice Things About Detroit” mural.
Something I am very passionate about is seeing a group of hardworking people overcome hard times.
That’s literally what’s happening right now in Detroit. And since the mainstream media isn’t willing to present the real news story, I am.
P.S. A special thanks to my fellow dad blogger and the other member of “Team Dad,” Fred Goodall, of Mocha Dadfor taking the pictures of our scavenger hunt.
As I unlocked the front door to our house this evening, it was everything I hoped it would be:
Mommy greeted and kissed me right away, and there you were, jumping up and down, so excited I was back.
Of course, that didn’t last long, because then you asked me, “Daddy, you got a car for me?”
I had told you yesterday on the phone that I was working on getting a souvenir for you, which based on the fact I was visiting the OnStar and Buick headquarters, I hinted that I might be bringing you home a toy car.
Needless to say, you were thrilled to watch me open the huge convertible I was able to bring home, thanks to the help of one of my friends, Katie, I had met from my last trip to Detroit.
I told her, “My son is turning 3 a week from now. I would like to bring him home a souvenir/early birthday present. He’s not picky. Any toy car you have just laying around, it will be perfect.”
Katie did not disappoint.
Like with all your new toys, you initiated it by putting it through the Play-Doh torture center, as you did your Camaro recently. The show ended with you taking green Play-Doh and forming action figures of Mommy and yourself, to pop a wheelie in the car, at the edge of your Thomas the Train table.
A father bringing home his son a souvenir from his overnight trip is a given. I mean, I never thought about it until I arrived in Detroit.
In fact, part of my main agenda for the trip was to find and obtain a cool souvenir for you. I knew everything else would work itself out.
I was right. If I’m not mistaken, you’re sleeping with that huge convertible toy car as I write you this.