By John Matonich
I know this isn’t a big surprise to most everyone, but I can’t help think about the chapters we all go through in our lives. I have traveled back and forth to my homeland in the west end of Da U.P. from the Flint area for over 35 years and since it is 8 ½ hours EACH way, you have a lot of time to think. On one of my recent trips, I took some time to reflect on some of the chapters of life with my name on them.
My earliest memory was December of 1963. I was going to be four in a couple of months and I remember my mother crying, both loud and long. I remember asking her why she was crying and she told me someone has shot President Kennedy. I certainly had no clue who that was, but I also remember crying myself a day or so later when my mother said that the “Christmas City of the North” parade held in Duluth, Minnesota was cancelled in honor of the guy and wasn’t going to be on our black and white TV that night. I remember being kind of mad for just a bit, but then remembered my mother crying. If she felt this way about the guy, the least I could do was suck it up.
The chapters kind of fly by from that point. Each has its own pluses and minuses, but none have any regrets. From school years to college years to work years, they are all times to remember, cherish and hopefully learn from. This most current chapter (which is just beginning) has its own set of smiles (and a couple of frowns).
After 35 years of working for the best engineering/surveying company in the country, I decided it was time to “pull the pin”. I may be a little prejudiced when I say it is the best in the country, but since I served as their CEO for the last 15 years, I think I might know J. It was a wonderful place to work and I worked with great staff and clients for that entire time. The new CEO is doing a super job and she will take the company very far. I expect that, as I was the guy who hired her, a number of years ago. As for me, my new chapter includes a move back home and the beginning of a new endeavor.
Moving is always a stressful time, but even more so when it is a 550 mile one. The bright, shining light (besides seeing a sparkle in my bride’s eye) to this whole deal is I have taken a hobby I have had for over 30 years and now use it to get me up in the morning. I have opened a custom woodshop on the main street of my hometown. It is just a blast to be here working on a few projects and getting reacquainted with Bessemer. So if you are in the area, stop in and look around … coffee is on.
And that’s the Situation as I Survey it …
After a 35-year career downstate amongst da trolls, during which he built a successful engineering and surveying business, John Matonich is back home in da U.P. His column will appear here occasionally, don’tcha know. His book “Surveyin’ Da Situation” is available on Amazon.