What constitutes home? DB says home is a place that holds a store of experience, like the pizza place on Front Street where he would go when he was working in the area, where he and his now ex stopped for slices on one of their first dates, where we had just eaten then walked by the water to the bleachers cupped toward Jane’s Carousel and the Manhattan skyline. A range of his emotions have inhabited the pizza place. That’s home.
I’ve had trouble finding it lately. I’d found it briefly yet almost instantly in Quito, oddly enough. Something about the light that would wake me in the mornings. And the park nearby where I would go and meditate. The kitchen where I’d make toast and eggs, the communal picnic tables near the hostel’s front desk, tables where I’d sit with a thermos of hot water and a yerba mate gourd as I did my day’s writing. Home is where I plant the stakes of routine. I’d found it briefly, then I left.
My primary scheme for extending my travels was to continue subletting my room in Brooklyn and split rent with M on his yurt in the Catskills. I’ve been driving a rental car to the city for errands and catchups, and halfway between to Beacon to see S. Times and types of meals, places I wake, hours I sleep, all have been erratic. Now I’m back home in Michigan for my brother’s graduation, and that word – home – I just typed without thinking, because this is the one place that has seen more – maybe the most – repetition, and the widest breadth of experience, of any other in my thirty years.
There are minor differences. A pipe burst during the winter and my mother just finished having new tile put in the kitchen. The carpet in the entire house was replaced, and the fireplace was redone, too. My bed has been moved three inches to the right. I’m typing most of this on a cheap desk from Target that I’d bought when I was in Michigan years ago during my mother’s treatment for early-stage Hodgkins (she’s fine, now). My brother took the desk with him to college – the steel and glass one in his bedroom was too unwieldy. We moved his things out of East Lansing yesterday, and now the desk is here again underneath my forearms. This morning I meditated, then journaled extensively for the first time in days, with a thermos of tea within reach of my left hand. I am relieved. This is home, again, for now.