After accepting the position at Excelsior Academy, my next step was to secure a place to live. I searched the internet from top to bottom and was only finding houses for rent. I didn't want to fork out that much money for just little ol' me.
I knew the only way to find a place in the area was to network.
I had already contacted a few people on facebook. (I sent a message to a girl who had hosted a News Year's Eve party. She had to be cool. It turns out that she also happened to be the Relief Society President of the Singles Ward in Tooele.) But the sense of urgency wasn't there. They were all willing to keep me informed about what they heard, but were they really listening out? I knew if they met me, they'd be more proactive in helping me in my search.
I made a trip up to Tooele on Memorial Day 2009. (I was already almost in the area for the weekend anyway.)
Megan, the Relief Society President I mentioned earlier in parenthesis, offered to show me around and help me locate some places and introduce me to people. I called her on my drive to Tooele and she mentioned that she was headed to a barbeque and that I was more than welcome to come with her there.
We agreed to meet at a central location. The local Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart should've been easy to find. And most people would've found it immediately. I figured it was on Main Street, but no matter how many times I drove up and down that road I couldn't find it. I sent a text Google's way and got the address. Even with the address, I knew where it should be, but I still didn't see it when I drove past. I was too distracted by taking in the sights I guess. I finally saw it tucked away behind a front row of shops and restaurants.
I was early for the designated meeting time. Of course. I was nervous, and I had nothing else to do. And I feared getting lost. I waited for what seemed like forever before Megan showed up.
She still had brownies in the oven at home, so we got in her car and went back to her place. I met her mother. So far, my impression of the town was very positive.
We headed to the barbeque. I met a handful of girls who would be in my ward. None of them were helpful in suggesting places I might be able to live. Turns out, they weren't being rude; there just aren't places to rent in Tooele.
After the barbeque, we headed up the street to a local park to play volleyball and kickball. As much fun as I was having, I didn't want too much time to pass because I was determined to find a place to live that day.
I met many of those who would become my closest friends that day. I like to reminisce with a few of them about that day.
I texted one friend today to remind him of our first meeting. "It was on this day in 2009 that I first met you. And it was because you didn't remember meeting me that you later labeled me a stalker." Hahahaha. Good times.
Casey, my sister, and I drove the back way to Tooele, which was the way I took one year ago. We arrived at the same park where I played kickball on that fateful day. After an hour of Ultimate Frisbee, I returned home to the apartment I secured on this day last year.
Ah, the memories.