Like how a bird flies south for the winter

February 20, 2012 § 2 Comments

I wouldn’t mind being home right about now. I miss my bed and my car. I miss the sunlight that streams through the clear windows of the dining room at breakfast. I miss sitting with my coffee and a book. I miss my room and my privacy, the quiet that being alone affords. I get a lot of me-time here, don’t get me wrong, but being alone in a place where social connections abound, has an oppressive quality to it, somehow. As if I’m not spending my time as wisely as I should, holding hands, having deep conversation over even deeper cups of coffee. It’s strange how the brief moments of being alone in a place where I am constantly with someone or someones makes me feel lonelier than I am over there where being alone with your mind and being able to do things for yourself is necessitated by circumstance.

Starbucks satisfaction not quite the same as breakfast table (in my jammies with my book) happiness

I know I will miss this – the noise, the flurry, the unavoidable bumping into each other. But I miss my freedom too. Being able to sit quietly with just my feelings, being able to examine them as much as I wish (while often not the healthiest of past times), is a luxury I can ill-afford here. And yet, this is what I come home for every single year, like clockwork, like how birds fly south every winter.

I come home (and indeed, I call this place home) for the warmth of family and friendship. I come home for the drama and the seemingly unwanted intrusions that, in retrospect, I would not wish to be any other way. The phone rings approximately 8 times a day with phone calls from the family that I know and love intensely and forever, and I answer it. Yes, I get peeved for being rudely awakened, but I answer. And I am glad to answer. It’s rare for me to get phone calls in Australia in which the person who calls has known me for all my life, knows how I like my eggs, what song I’m likely to burst into at any given moment, how I’d choose meat over fish on any given day, how I would rather eat a burger and fries than popcorn while watching a movie.

Being here brings me to peaks and troughs of emotion that being there cannot, just cannot. Maybe this is evidence of my emotional attachment, involvement, entanglement with here that will always make me call it home.

Home is where my family is. Home is where my friends my sisters are. This is the only place in the world where I’m in constant danger of losing my voice from laughing too loud, talking too strong, loving too much. Here, the idea of spending too much time together is a laughable one. Here, the era of slumber parties and Disney princesses comes alive, and indeed, shakes hands with alcohol-induced exploration. Here, the years between high school graduation and present day in the real world disappear. Here is where a contract exists in which one or both parties can get mad, but still have to love each other. Here is where there is no giving up on us.


Sometimes I wish I were like those people who can call whichever corner of the world they are at the moment home. I’ve often wondered about them and wished to have their level of satisfaction and contentment (maybe detachment?). I’ve tried to be like them, and I have to admit that sometimes, I still try to be. But more and more, I’m learning the futility of this endeavour; it’s simply impossible. Slowly I reconcile myself with the fact that tree roots will always go deeper than the eye can see.


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