Short stay leads to hard goodbye

By Chris Schmaedeke, QCS managing editor

How do you say goodbye to someone you feel like you just met?

I am dealing with that problem right now.

I have been the managing editor at the Quay County Sun since September and have experienced many good and bad things. But sometimes things just have to come to an end.

That time is now for me.

While I have enjoyed my time here in Tucumcari, Colorado has always felt like home. It is where I went to school and grew up, it is where my family is, it is where I met my wife and it is where my friends are. I lived there for almost 20 years of my life and when an opportunity knocked on the door to go back, I had to open that door and head in.

My time at the Quay County Sun has been a learning experience. When my wife and I moved here we didn’t know what to expect. I had never lived in a tight-knit community like this. I am a city boy or at least a suburb boy if there is such a thing. I wondered how we would fit in. Could this really be for us?

This town taught us how important community is to the people of Tucumcari. The readers looked to the newspaper for good information and news about the town and county. Sometimes I achieved that but sometimes I struggled to find what my readers actually wanted from their newspaper.

We found it hard from time to time but for the most part it we were welcomed into the town. It is all about adapting and that is something we tried to do as much as we could. We figured out where to go and what to do.

But change was needed. Not to say anything bad about the community but sometimes something just doesn’t work. I enjoyed our six months here but knew it was time to move on.

Moving from city to city seems to go hand-in-hand with people in the newspaper business. I don’t think my wife realized that when she fell in love with a journalist.

Will I be in my new home for longer than six months? Only time will tell. But making this stop in Quay County was not a bad decision. It is something I don’t regret and will never ever forget.

From covering city and school board meetings, to watching football at Rattler Stadium or watching basketball at the Snake Pit or at Logan, to covering the air show, to getting stuck in front of my own driveway during the snowstorm, to working those late Tuesday nights to get the paper out, to trudging through the mud on Jack Smith’s ranch, it has all been worth it.

So I say goodbye to Tucumcari and the Quay County Sun.

It feels like we never really got to know each other.