For your consideration - Thom Barker

For your consideration - Thom Barker

You probably didn’t hear it first here

Thom reflects on making a big move to Prince Rupert

I started out with the best intentions. Whenever one makes a momentous life decision there is a hierarchy of “people who need to know” before it becomes public knowledge.

The hierarchy starts with the people who are directly affected and trickles down to those least affected. Family, employers, co-workers, friends, acquaintances etc.

Of course, as soon as you start telling anybody, word starts to get around and before you know it, someone further down the list than some of the people higher up the list, brings it up and you say, “oh, crap, the cats are out of the bag.”

I had originally intended to write this column much closer to the actual big date, but since trying to shove cats back into a bag is, well, kind of like herding cats, I figured I might as well get it over with.

I am moving to Prince Rupert at Christmas.

To the “people who need to know” who I didn’t get around to telling before they read it in the newspaper, I apologize. Like I said, I started out with the best intentions.

It is going on four years now since, on the heels of another momentous decision not of my own making, Smithers became my soft place to land.

I am truly grateful to all the wonderful people in Smithers who made that period in my life tolerable if not joyous.

Honestly, when I landed again in Smithers, and for the following three years after that, I couldn’t imagine ever leaving the Bulkley Valley again.

It was my refuge, my haven, my reboot, my fresh start. If I was ever going to move again, I thought, it would have to be for something truly compelling.

But life is funny and just when I was least expecting it, I found new love. Over time it became so compelling, we started looking for ways that we could be together full-time.

Conveniently, one year ago, I became Black Press regional editor for Northwest B.C.

That opened the possibility of me working from pretty much anywhere in the region from Smithers to Prince Rupert.

The time has come.

There have been a few times in my life that I felt like I would never uproot again, but apparently, the wanderlust is a more powerful force than the nesting instinct for me.

I am excited about turning the page to a new chapter even as I am saddened by moving on from the last one.

Rest assured, I will be back periodically.

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