Sunday, March 11, 2012
In case you missed the huge announcement last week, I want to be sure that everyone knows: Taco House has re-opened for the 2012 season. Let the grease begin.
As residents of the Lakes Area, our lives are intensely seasonal. The crowds come and (thankfully) go. The snow-birds return, the docks go in, and then just as suddenly, the docks come out. We mark the changes with our own quirky traditions, as reminders that in the midst of the change, the important things (like Taco House and nutty bars and roller coasters) stay the same.
We biked down to Taco House yesterday to join the crowds. I wasn’t as hungry for Nachos Royale (hold the onions, add extra guacamole) as I was for the nostalgia and the tradition. As I pedaled, I thought about seasons and the inevitability of change. As teachers, we work in a profession which is certainly as much or perhaps even more seasonal than tourism at the Lakes. Every year, we fall in love with a new set of students. We adjust to new schedules, new curriculum and new people. And, in the midst of the change, the important things (like kids learning and growing and becoming) stay the same.
Do you remember the summer when Taco House was threatened? Taco House became the icon of summer back in its glory days, with a prominent location on Highway 71. When the city decided to widen the road, it was declared that Taco House would no longer be on the highway but would be tucked away several hundred yards to the West. I worried about Taco House that summer. I worried that the change wouldn’t be good for its business, and that it might never be the same. I lost weight due to the absence of grease and nacho cheese in my regular summer diet.
You can imagine how happy I was when Taco House re-opened again after the Highway Project was complete. I vividly remember sitting outside on the picnic tables, munching nachos with joy. “This is amazing!” I exclaimed. “How did they move Taco House without changing even one thing? The concrete tables are exactly the same, the potted plants, the little brick wall, and even the booths and the interior of the restaurant are completely the same! I can’t believe they were able to move Taco House without changing everything that I love about this place.”
James sat silently as I marveled about this engineering mystery. Finally, he looked me in the eye and said slowly, “Kari, they didn’t move Taco House. They moved the highway.”
I had wasted a lot of energy worrying about something that wasn’t even real. My fears were based on imagination, and mis-information. My reflexive response to change is generally one of doubt and fear and uneasiness. But what I learned from Taco House that day was this: change is inevitable, and beyond my control. But fear is not.
James smiled at me and we started to laugh and laugh and laugh. We still haven’t stopped laughing.
“You should worry less and bike more,” he said. And he was right.
Posted by KMW at 7:00 PM