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Being Thankful Before Thanksgiving

As many of you know, Mary Kay and I are moving to Ann Arbor, Mich. this week. I’m still officially in Waco as the Glass Doctor president until the end of the year, but MK starts her new role as Molly Maid president immediately. My vice president, Brad Roberson, who has been in the glass business for over 20 years as a franchisee and now at corporate, will take over.

I flew into Ann Arbor Thursday night because we were closing on our new home Friday. MK has never driven in snow before and since it was snowing all day Thursday, we agreed I should take an Uber to the hotel.

Mohammed, a man in his mid-20’s picked me up. He moved to the U.S. six years ago from Lebanon. His English, he said, was terrible. His sister and her husband lived in the Detroit area and his entire family moved here.

I asked him why they moved. Mohammed doubted anyone would even ask this question. He beamed while saying it was for the opportunities here. When he came here he was 19 years old and had nothing. He mentioned trying to go to school was a chore because he just couldn’t understand his professors, especially those who spoke quickly.

Now he has a college degree, is building computer boards for the airline industry and recently got married, his wife is also from Lebanon. Traveling back and forth was very expensive while they were engaged. Mohammed told me how hard he had to work to be able to make the trips back home to see her before they were married.

She’s taking night classes to be an interior decorator and working full time during the day.  When she has class, he drives with Uber because he’s also helping his parents out. He explained the move has been difficult for his parents who are now in their early 60’s. They left everything, to come here. Their English is still poor and becomes a burden for them.

Mohammed said his friends in Lebanon can’t find work and that its unemployment is over 58 percent. But he still believes his parents will return to Lebanon as they move into their golden years. He however, hasn’t been back since his wedding and isn’t sure if he will return.

He beamed when talking about how much he has been able to achieve in six years.

America, the land of opportunity.

When I watch the news each night, I see the opposite. My flight was delayed because someone in Austin, where the flight originated, was shooting at airplanes taking off. Inspectors spent an hour at the DFW airport looking for possible damages.

Both parties are angry with the election results. There was a time when two people could talk civilly despite having differing political views, much of that has passed. It’s important to watch what isn’t happening in Congress and the Senate because our representatives simply won’t work with the other side of the aisle.

America, the land of opportunity.

Regardless of the challenges life delivers, I know how blessed MK and I are. This year she’ll even learn to drive in the snow.

Happy Thanksgiving.