Justin and I went to Rupp Arena for what has become our annual Christmas break basketball game (I think after three years it becomes a tradition). Always against a no-name team. Always a blow-out (I think it’s been 30 points the past two years). Always a great reminder of what we are missing living so far away from Wildcat Country.
Justin and I hauled ourselves across downtown Lexington in about ten minutes tonight (a perk of a smaller town than Boston!) and made it into our seats just as they began announcing the starting line-up for Coppin State (you know you haven’t heard of them before, either; according to Justin, they’re a school in Baltimore not known for their basketball). We were there for the fireworks. We were there for the tip-off. We had amazing seats. But something was missing, and I don’t mean Robbie (don’t panic; he was at the dinner we left early with my parents).
Although the game was more exciting than the lackluster showing of Billy Clyde’s Cats in 2008 (can you believe that guys STILL doesn’t have a job?), it didn’t have the magic about it that last year’s did. There was no John Wall. There was no Cousins. There was no anticipation about seeing the NEW Kentucky Wildcats.
But you know what? None of that really mattered to me. Well, it did a little. I think what was more important was the nostalgia. Watching the student section, seeing the college students living the life that I had ten years ago (how has it been a decade?). Remembering the most important games we’ve been to (mine is still Pitino’s first game back as Louisville’s coach in 2001). Waiting for the UK pyramid at the end of the second half.
Being home is a very conflicting thing for me (and Justin, too). Being here makes me want to move home, be closer to family, live a life that I know would be comfortable and “easy”-ish. But I also know that I’ll go home to Boston on Sunday and fall in love with life up there. I’ll love the snow and my friends and my job. I guess this is the part of life that we can’t necessarily plan. I worry that if I want to be home in Lexington so bad that I try to force it to happen, I might be disappointed in how it all turns out. So I’ll enjoy my time at home and let life take me on the journey I’m supposed to have. And I’ll thank God every day that he gave me a wonderful man to travel with (oh, and a pretty great little boy, too).