Stodalka: With apologies and gratitude

Reporter's Notebook

I’ve been lucky enough to write about Northeast B.C. for three years. There’s a part of me I wish could stay longer.

Unfortunately, this is my good-bye column. So in this column, I want to say sorry and goodbye.

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I want to write an apology to all the people I’ve written about. Sorry for misspelled names, sorry for the stories that were 99.9 per cent correct (or lower), sorry for all the stories where I had to edit out something near and dear to you that you told me about.

I never meant to get it wrong, but I did, sometimes. So I hope you can forgive me.

But this is also a thank you, for letting me tell your stories. You’ve made this job a blessing, and one I’m lucky to have had.

I’ve had funny stories about bees in walls, real-life cowboys, exciting stories about the darkest parts of man, and the conflict between industry and environmentalism. This is a region that’s changing, and those are always the best ones to write about.

I’m leaving to be closer to my family in Saskatchewan, where I’ve taken another job in journalism. I hope my experiences there will be just as good as those here.

However, the people I’m leaving behind will continue to make a great newspaper, one that Peace Region residents can be proud of.

I’m probably going to be leaving out somebody here, but in no particular order, here are some parting thoughts:

• Thanks to all the emails people sent in thanking me for my stories. We don’t know what you think unless you tell us, so keep it coming in, positive or negative.

• Thanks to all the Good Samaritans who have helped me out over my time here when my car got stuck in the mud, snow, or the ditch.

• Thanks to the person who always brought in doughnuts and treats to the newspaper office.

• While I’ve always tried to be a neutral observer, as I’m something of a private citizen now, I’d like to say that I don’t think 100th Avenue and 100th Street in Fort St. John should be turned into three-lane streets. Spend the money elsewhere.

• The Dawson Creek Art Gallery is a really awesome venue, and kudos to the woman who thought of it.

• No matter how you feel about Site C, take a look at what the Peace River Valley looks like now, because the view is majestic, and that view won’t be around forever.

• Motley Crue rocked at the Encana Events Centre, and I’m glad I was able to photograph the concert. One of the perks of the jobs for sure.

• Again, thanks to Adam, Byron, Dave, Matt Lamers, and anyone else I’ve missed for all the laughs and beers.

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