Tuesday, November 24, 2009
4 years ago...
Four years ago Chad and I were living in Panama City Beach and loving our "newlywed" lifestyle! We moved down to PCB without knowing anyone but thankfully we quickly made it home. Chad was offered a job with Lilly in May 2004 and we got married the next month, June 5, 2004. We were so unprepared. We packed up our car a few weeks before we got married and we drove down to the coast to find somewhere to live. We didn't do any research before hand and we LITERALLY just drove around looking for apartments. We started in Destin but we could only find one apartment complex and it had a very long waiting list at it was $1,200 a MONTH, yes, my friends, a month! So we kept on driving to the spring break capital of the US..Panama City Beach. We drove around until we stumbled upon Harbor Green apartments. We loved them and signed a lease on the spot. Upon signing the lease, I noticed that there was an elementary school next door. How convenient, I thought, I should apply. I did and amazingly, the principal's children went to UNA so she was interested in me. I was hired over the phone!
It was four years ago this month, however; that we got the sad news that Chad was being reallocated with Lilly. We were totally blindsided by the news. He called me at work and I had to go home immediately after hearing the news. I was sobbing! We weren't sure where we would have to go next. (Unfortunately, we are in the middle of a reallocation again and still not sure if/or when we are going to have to move but that's another post.) We found out in November and we sold our house and moved home by January. It was quick.
I can't believe that we have been back in Florence for 4 years. The time has gone by really fast!
Here are the top 5 things that Chad and I miss the most about living in Panama City.
5. The Shopping-I LOVED driving over to Destin for the day to shop at the outlets. I would go with Chad or alone sometimes. I loved being so close to such great deals. Since we moved Panama City built the Pier park development and it's even better than what Destin has to offer. I would've gotten in lots of trouble there I am afraid!
4. Our first house! We bought our first house about 6 weeks before we found out that we were being reallocated. It was tiny. It was about 1,000 square feet but we LOVED it because it was ours! I can't find a picture of it on this computer but it looked beachy. It was stucco, had a one car garage. We were so proud. We put in new tiles and painted the entire house. We basically flipped it because we only owned it for like two months.
3. THE FOOD-We used to eat out all of the time! And not to Taco Bell, we went to eat the good stuff. We love seafood and we made the most of being so close to great restaurants. (Now wonder I was so "fluffy" when I lived there!) Some of our favorite restaurants were: Schooners, Big City Fish, Montego Bay, and The Boatyard. Sometimes we would go to the seafood market and get a huge cooler full of seasoned steamed shrimp and we would eat and eat! We probably spent way to much money of food, but who cares now. It was great!
2. The friends we made-I taught first grade at Patronis and LOVED every moment of it. I taught with amazing teachers. The school was developed and laid out in pods. I taught with Ana Hull, Alison Parker, and Brenda McGonagil. We all were great friends and planned our lessons together. The teachers play Bunco together, shopped together, and went out to eat often. Alison and I got to be good friends. Sandy was/is a dear friends and they both still live in Panama City. I also loved the fact that it was a shorter school day. The morning bell rang at 7:50 and school dismissed at 2! We started loading the buses at 1:45... :)) Why can't we do that in Alabama??
1. And of course, the number one reason we loved living in Panama City was the BEACH!! Our apartment was so close to the beach. It would just take a few minutes to get there. We could go at any time and we loved that! Now I hate that we didn't go walk on the beach every night! If I had known that we would have to move and leave so quickly, I feel that we would have enjoyed it even more. My school was so close the the airplanes with the banners would fly over the playground. You could smell the beach in the air. It was such a stressfree place to work and live. In the fall, Chad and I loved to take a picnic lunch to the beach and sit and eat.
There is a job opening in Destin and we did consider it for a few minutes but it is just so far from family.
Not many people get the opportunity to live at the beach so we count our blessings that we were able to experience life at the beach! I think of my Florida friends almost daily!