It is not my intention to over-play this.

Tonight on Facebook, in response to my post about the sale of the Atomic Abode, my friend Scott replied, “The end of an era!”

I am prone to theatrics.  But, “The End of An Era” has been used to describe the series finales of sitcoms, fleeting political careers, and retirements of cable television wrestlers.  I think I’m entitled to use the phrase in this circumstance.  I am staring down the barrel of the completion of a huge chunk of my life!

Not just a job – a career.  Not just a house – The Atomic Abode.  Not merely friends – family.  Not only a city – my home for over 20 years.

For the last two days I have awoken, tidied up, and vacated my property with Boss Tweed and Olive in tow, destination the next door neighbor’s, hiding out as strangers traipse through my home.  What a very odd feeling. But, it has given me the unadulterated time to recall the good times – the fond memories of cases won, careers launched, fortunes earned and squandered, soirees thrown and lifetime friendships forged.

My friends, everything comes to an end.  The question is whether that end is chosen by you, or for you.

There is no doubt that this transition is bittersweet.  Yet over and over, this sense of calmness and certainty washes over me, and I am comforted by the notion that the most treasured experiences in life are fleeting.  Come to think of it, especially those.

Not surprisingly, there’s a Billy Joel song for that (unabashed B. Joel fan here – get used to it) :

“I’ve Loved These Days” — Billy Joel

“Now we take our time, so nonchalant
And spend our nights so bon vivant
We dress our days in silken robes
The money comes
The money goes
We know it’s all a passing phase
We light our lamps for atmosphere
And hang our hopes on chandeliers
We’re going wrong, we’re gaining weight
We’re sleeping long and far too late
And so it’s time to change our ways
But I’ve loved these days
Now as we indulge in things refined
We hide our hearts from harder times
A string of pearls, a foreign car
Oh we can only go so far
On caviar and cabernet
We drown our doubts in dry champagne
And soothe our souls with fine cocaine
I don’t know why I even care
We’ll get so high and get nowhere
We’ll have to change our jaded ways
But I’ve loved these days

So before we end and then begin
We’ll drink a toast to how it’s been
A few more hours to be complete
A few more nights on satin sheets
A few more times that I can say
I’ve loved these days.”