Matthew and I flew to Midland this week to go house hunting as we prepare to move 500 miles for his new job. Having lived in Houston suburbs the majority of my life, transitioning me to this dusty oil town has both of us a bit nervous, so Matthew pulled out all the stops to try to help me fall in love with Midland this week.
Right after leaving the airport, he drove me to a Starbucks to get some morning coffee. “See? They have coffee in Midland!” He knows my love languages: chocolate and coffee.
I placed my order with the barista, who apologized and told me that they didn’t have the ingredients for my drink of choice. Matthew wasn’t paying attention and was so eager for me to like Midland that I quickly placed a different order to avoid seeing a crestfallen look on his face.
For lunch, Matthew planned to take me to The Smiling Moose, a cute little cafe that apparently started in Colorado and expanded to the little town of Midland. I looked forward to trying something new and finding a cute little cafe to frequent during our years here, but when we pulled up, we found that the little cafe had shut down while the glaring red lights of hot dog chain Wienerschnitzel blazed on next door. Midland is truly a single man’s town.
We ended up at McAlister’s instead, where we waited half an hour for our order-at-the-counter food, and my order came out wrong. Apparently the service industry really struggles in this town full of nothing but rig hands and stay-at-home moms who have relocated for their oilman husbands.
Undeterred, Matthew looked up parks in the area and excitedly told me to trade out my fashion boots for walking shoes; we were going on a family walk in a beautiful nature preserve! He drove us to Jenna Welch Nature Study & Wildlife Preserve, which boasted hundreds of 4-star reviews.
Matthew happily chatted away on the drive until we pulled up to the spot indicated on his GPS. Tentatively, he pulled into the massive RV park, driving up and down the rows of trucks and trailers and grills and cornhole boards. When no wildlife preserve appeared, he turned to me, disappointment on his sweet face. Trying to cheer him up, I pointed excitedly. “Babe, it IS a wildlife preserve! Look!”
He followed the direction of my finger as I continued, “It’s a common American wildcatter!”
Matthew was not amused.
But, after a pause, he joined in my laughter and gave me a kiss. Faith, love, and laughter are going to get us through this new adventure.