31 Dec 2011

Happy New Year 2012 to all who visit this site. I usually take time at this new yearly beginning to reflect on some of my favorite past moments. There are many to choose from but these two are near the top for now.

My daughter Krissy lives in Kenai Alaska and recently sent me this picture. It was taken from the fishing dock in Kenai looking westward over Cook Inlet towards Mount Redoubt, an active volcano that last erupted in 2001.

Sunset in Kenai, Alaska

The picture is so spectacular that I’m using it as the screen saver on my computer. It’s an example of what’s still right about this crazy world we live in and also reflects a very important turning point in my life.

In 1995 I visited Alaska for the first time and fell in love with the beauty and spaciousness of the place. I sat on a hilltop looking out over Cook Inlet and felt – for the first time ever – complete and utter peacefulness. I remember the warmth of the sun on me, the clear blue sky overhead and so quiet I could hear the chug, chug, chug of the engine of a boat even though I could only see it in the distance as a slow moving dot on the water.

The following year I returned to that same spot and again experienced my wonderful peaceful feeling. It was in that moment of clarity I knew I could choose to return to Seattle and resume my stressful and chaotic life, or try to keep this new peaceful feeling alive. I chose the later and made myself a promise to change my life.

That was August of 1996 and when I returned to Seattle I kept that promise. I sold my printing business in November of that year and opened a door to a much simpler and happy lifestyle that continues today.

***

Every year at this time I remember the story of my father, Harold Frank Gribbin, and mother, Thelma Morrison Gribbin, driving from San Francisco California to Los Vegas Nevada – a distance of 570 miles – in a heavy snowstorm just to get married on New Year’s day. California had a long waiting period before they would issue a marrage license and in Nevada it was only one day.

This was January 1, 1934, so cars and roads were not the wonderful driving experience they are today. They took my dad’s brother, Oral Gribbin, to help shovel if they got stuck in the snow and to be a witness to the marriage if needed.

I wish I knew more about the events of that trip – maybe it helped them stay together for almost 50 years until dad passed away in 1982.

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3 Responses to Happy New Year 2012!
  1. Thomas M. Gribbin, Sr. December 31, 2011 at 9:02 pm Reply

    I’m jealous, but we get some beautiful sunsets here in Pittsburgh too. I’d say Alaska is a little more spacious than PA. It’s great to hear these stories though…us Gribbin’s get around. Happy New Year gang..from the Tom Gribbin family here in Pittsburgh, PA.

  2. Edward John Gribbin January 1, 2012 at 6:35 am Reply

    I enjoyed reading your post and the photograph on this New Year’s Day 2012 and wish you all the best from the province of Ulster in Ireland and in paticular from County Derry. Maybe sometime in the new year I can upload some of my poetry which I have started to recite publicly and for which I have recieved some pleasant recomendations; also a paticular sunrise sequence (3 photo’s) taken from my home looking eastwards on the dawn of a recent mid-summer’s day; thank you for your input to the Gribbin web site,I enjoy it, take care; Ed-j.

  3. Joseph Patrick Gribbin, Jr January 22, 2012 at 12:11 pm Reply

    Great picture and story Michael.


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