My time in Ardmore is winding down and, frankly, I'm looking forward to new challenges and a new environment, but I'd be amiss to not appreciate the awesomeness I've been privileged to be a part of here.
I've worked lots of places in my fifty years and mostly with some wonderful colleagues and supervisors. In retrospect, I can't think of any really bad work experiences I've had.
But this group in Ardmore...man, they're something special.
Please indulge me and let me introduce them...
Leader of the pack is the Skipper, Harvey. He's a guy that dots the "i"s and crosses the "t"s. He knows a lot. A whole lot. He's taught me more than he will ever know. And he's a biker - extra kudos to Harvey for that. He knows more than any of us, yet is the epitome of humbleness.
Wayne, who I think of as Thurston, is someone I strive to be like. He didn't need to be here, yet he joined the group under an uncommonly difficult situation. He was a late addition, he played catch-up. His work ethic and adaptability are amazing. So is his ability to save Brent's a**.
Deb or Ginger, and I use that nickname in it's most admiring form, has been a savior. She's taken on roles none of us could have played. She faced audiences that would have cowered the strongest of us. She performed with determination, perseverance, professionalism and heart. A true artist, she is.
Lori can only be Mary Ann. She's to the point, organized, dependable and anything else one would want in a sister, mother, daughter or best friend. Quick story...Lori was once in a confrontation situation with an overly demanding student. During a "cooling-down" break another stake-holder mentioned to Lori "watch out, that woman just returned from a tour of duty in Iraq". Lori's reply was, "I've raised three kids, let her bring it on." That moment in time will forever let me remember Lori.
And finally, my co-host in crime, DeWayne "dynamite" Knight, who I think of as the Professor, has taught me so much about teaching. If it wouldn't make me a middle child, I'd want him for a younger brother.
Me? I'm just happy to be Gilligan in this three month tour.
Thanks to all of you who have made this past experience a remarkable time in my life...and curse you for setting the bar so high for the future!