A year and a day ago I arrived in Sacramento, scared and excited about returning to television news. In my year at News10 I've helped cover riots, a massive deadly pipeline explosion, a grisly end to a child abduction, a judicious end to the Jaycee Dugard saga, and the on and off exodus of the Sacramento Kings. It's been an incredible 12 months.
But a little over a month ago my beautiful wife, the Czarina called me and said seven simple words, it's time for you to come home. We tried really hard to make the separation work. Our training for St. George, our time at Christmas with Andrei and the excitement of Natasha's pregnancy culminating with the birth of Dasha helped get us through 11 difficult months.
But by May both of us were worn out. I was tired of a life that consisted of work, work, a run and more work. The Czarina was swallowed up by the solitude of our home and the lack of companionship. So I made the difficult decision to return home. I begin my return journey to Fort Myers on Saturday. Yes Hula, I'm coming through Paducah so alert the natives.
My baseball friends will appreciate this because I feel like Bob "Suitcase" Seeds. He was a major league outfielder who played for five teams in nine seasons. He even played for the same team twice which even I managed to beat scoring the hat trick with WDAF. My career in television started in 1974. I've worked at more stations than I care to recite here. Hopefully one more opportunity to step up to the plate in this gut-wrenching business will be afforded me.
I'm sad because I've never worked with a better group of journalists than the folks at News10. We simply had no weak links in our newsroom. The producers were incredible, our photographers talented, our reporters great, the editors top-notch, a sensational group of assignment editors and our anchor team simply the best I've ever had the privilege to know. There were no egos. It was simply about the newscast at hand and putting the best on our air.
It wasn't until the last few days that I realized that even during my short tenure that my contributions hadn't gone unnoticed. I've heard praise from people that I rarely interacted with to the folks who became my second family at nights about the void my departure will bring. All I can say is I'm lucky. I got to experience the power of working with really smart and really dedicated journalists. Here's to hoping that lightning can strike twice.