Yesterday, my good friend, and undoubtedly one of the best friends I will ever have, boarded a plane to move to San Jose, California.
The friend: Erin Hicks, co-founder of the now-defunct AWKWARD is Awesome blog.
When she first told me about the opportunity to move to San Jose – where the sun is always shining, San Fran is a 45 minute drive away, and the quality of life is one of the highest [at least according to Men’s Health Magazine, her former employeer] — I was happy for her, but didn’t express that “happy emotion.” Whatsoever.
I was in shock, disbelief, and denial that she’d actually be moving 3,000 miles away, after she had just moved back to NY only a few months earlier. Our dream to be together as friends in NYC — our shining city — had finally come true.
She made the move to carry on and grow an important relationship in her life. It’s a tough call – packing your bags and leaving behind many loving friendships for the one loving relationship that [quite honestly] has to matter the most.
I belief that she made the right decision, and in hindsight, I would have still encouraged her to follow her heart. Because I truly believe the rest – the best that is yet to come – will follow.
But when her cab pulled away on the evening of her goodbye party, the tears still came. And when I think of the memories, I do feel like a part of me boarded that plane with her, but may have gotten lost in transit crossing the continental US.
This post’s for you, Erin E!
<3 Sammy D
When Erin first moved to New York in January ‘08, I was a senior in college at Temple University. She had graduated early from University of Washington, Seattle. She arrived at the airport in Newark, NJ where I surprised her with the sign, “Erin Hicks is AWKWARD, Therefore Awesome.”
I had never met her dad, Kevin, before meeting up with him in the city and driving to NJ to get Erin. But Kevin & I became fast friends waiting to greet the West Coast girl with her eyes set on NYC.
She had no job — but she had ambition. She grabbed two jobs waitressing. Moved to Harlem [literally down the street from where I live now] and then two internships, first at Blackbook Mag and then at NY Post. I quite honestly think she worked 18 hour days.
5 months after living in NYC, she was hired at Men’s Health in Emmaus, PA. She had to move out of NY. It was sheer … irony.
After a year working in PA [in a small town she absolutely despised] she received the green light from her company to work in NYC. After a little more than four months living in NYC, her life direction changes. And the green light points to San Jose.
At Erin’s going away party. Take note of our holding hands, and Erin’s admiration of my growing hair. She still thinks I should go back to being blonde, like the good ole’ AWKWARD days.
One of Erin’s co-workers at Women’s Health had a mock-up of a WH cover made of Erin. That’s her head imposed on the body of Zoe Saldana, a previous month’s cover model.
You can’t tell from this picture, but each sell-line [that’s magazine jargon for the headlines on the magazine cover] is catered to Erin’s tastes.
The best example: “Wear More Black!” <—— girl only wears blacks, grays, & whites [if we’re lucky to catch her on such a day]
Love you, Erin E!