Every once in a while I feel like I will hear her come in, hands full of work items, water, her bag. Always so much in her hands, it takes a few seconds for her to get through the door. I would always hear, “Hi Paula. Hi Randy. Hi Tom. Hi Maria” and whoever else was in her view from the employee entrance door to her office. But it’s a new day, new week, without Catherine here at the helm of editorial. It will take a little getting used to, not seeing her every day. Stepping into her office every now and then to talk about work, our busy lives, yoga, nutrition and health in general. We have a lot in common when it comes to trying to slow down the aging process and staying healthy.
We’ve had a lot in common since we met about 18 years ago. Our paths crossed at a creative nonfiction writing course at St. Clair Community College. She sat to my right, a row over and one seat up. We had a chance to get to know one another through our writings which we read out loud to the class. I was writing health and nutrition articles online at the time, working from home, and finishing up my degree in Communication Media (journalism) when this class caught my eye. She was there, I suspect, to hone her skills as a reporter at the Tri-City Times.
After hearing some of my articles, Catherine said something along the lines of, “Maybe you should come meet our editor. Maybe you could work a few hours a week, even from home, write or research.” Well, that sounded a tad intimidating. I had always written online, informative articles that didn’t need a whole lot of personal interaction. But okay, I’d check it out.
I met with Tom Wearing, who was editor at the time. Told him a little about myself, stay-at-home mom, work-from-home mom, with two little children 2 and 3 at the time. He handed me my first reporting assignment and said, “Let’s see how you do with this one.” My eyes grew big. Wait. What? Wow. That was fast. But it was good. And I began writing for the paper while doing my internship for my journalism class. It was a good part-time gig that’s turned into a full-time advertising sales job the last seven years.
So, thanks to Catherine (who is now my yoga instructor at Peaceful Moon Yoga) I am still here almost two decades later, just in a different department. I have helped editorial when necessary and I will again whenever I can. All the new editor has to do is ask. Which brings us to Maria, our new editor. She will do a fantastic job I am sure. I’m excited to see the future of this newspaper. She came in this morning through the employee entrance, hands full of items. “Hi Paula,” she said, then to everyone from the door to her new office.
What’s that they say? The more things change, the more they stay the same. Life is good.
Email Paula at paulaparisot@gmail.com.