I did it! Phew!
I packed my bags…and a gazillion boxes… and lugged them across the border to Upstate New York! The Rochester area, to be exact. My family and I have lived in our new city for a few weeks now and are slowly settling in. I thought what moment would be better than this one, as the kiddies are out making mama proud in their new all-American elementary school, to dust off the old laptop and give you all the latest.
In case you missed it: I’m back in the news biz!
My Instagram, Facebook, and various inboxes have been filled with words of encouragement and support lately. THANK YOU!! The outpouring of love – and questions — all began when I announced in early January that I would be leaving Canada and going back on-air.
That night, my munchkins and I got together with 40-something of our beloveds, and shared a meal, tears, and some awesome memories. Then came serious packing, back aches, and more tears, before our official exit from Toronto. See, that’s the thing about this business that people on the outside don’t understand: moving every few years and/or changing jobs comes with the territory. You typically start out in small markets and make strategic moves to end up where you want and deserve to be after putting in solid work. I’ve gone from news gigs in Oshawa, Ontario to Toronto and now to the U.S. – right in line with my long-time goal of practicing this trade south of the border. So, to those who think that maybe I’m habitually just getting bored every few years – I chuckle and say, “Nope, it’s all part of the plan.”
“True success requires sacrifice.” – Unknown
And here we go – I couldn’t be more excited to be working as a Multimedia Reporter & Producer and fill-in Host with WXXI News! On TV, we’re PBS and on the radio, we’re Rochester’s NPR affiliate. Because public broadcasting rocks!
It’s been such a warm welcome to the neighbourhood (yes, I know I will soon have to drop that “u”). So far, the people have been so nice…it’s just like being in Canada. I’ve seen a few Tim Horton’s around the way, and been hit with more than enough wicked snowstorms, geez it’s really starting to feel like I never left!
There’s so much to see and do in this city. But if I’m being honest, the food is all I can think about. Having Dunkin Donuts, some REAL Buffalo wings – not the imitations, authentic New York pizza, Chipotle, and Olive Garden at my fingertips is about to send me into cardiac arrest just at the thought. Torontonians: remember years ago when we used to have Olive Garden and then they were shut down?? It’s practically down the street now! Amazing! And I hear Rochester is known for something called the “Garbage Plate” – go ahead, Google it – I’m both scared and intrigued at the same damn time.
But, perhaps my most extensive search begins now for some quality Jamaican food. Not so much for restaurants, because I can cook my own food – but West Indian grocery stores where I can purchase the necessary ingredients. Those, unfortunately, are few and far between down here. I found a small Jamaican supermarket called Livie’s already, but they were more in the business of selling take-out cooked food. On my way out, I couldn’t resist buying a curry chicken dinner, and the owner, Michelle, was gracious enough to point me to a bigger place nearby where I can grab all the food and spices I’m used to. You can take a girl out of the islands, but she MUST always be able to find and cook her brown stew chicken and oxtail wherever she goes!
So much more to explore. Our adventure in the U-S of A begins!