07 September 2014

Home, or a kind of home

In October, I'll start my twelfth year abroad. This last week, as I was retelling the story of the last six years to someone, they said, Wow, you like to move around, and I didn't know how to respond. It sort of happened, I said. I'm not capable of making a decision and sticking with it. Or, other things keep coming up that look better and I take them. Or, life's too short. I laughed, Sort of.

Now, however, it seems settling is imposing itself on me. After looking at the house last week, I felt like we had found the perfect next step towards long-term stability, but no one really wanted to move again. Yoko said, Do you want to know the truth? when I asked her how she felt, and of course, I didn't. I don't ever want to know the truth about anything.

I did what I do: I wrote a note to the landlord, an e-mail that might have been the most carefully constructed bit of writing I have ever done, balancing three competing interests. And then she responded immediately, yes, we could stay for the same price and she would replace the mouldy floor, which were the only reasons we started looking in the first place. There it was: problem solved. I walked the kids to school the next day, past the house I wanted and thought, well, one day, I suppose.

There are all these hints of home here though, when I came back, as I did this last couple of days from a conference in Warwick. Harborne High St and the bus rattling up the hill to the Green Man pub on the corner on the other end of town. Yes, something familiar, even if it's only been nine months. I walk down Victoria Rd. The kids go to their school, and Mia starts on Wednesday. Nine months becomes ten and eleven and before you know it, it's been a year or eleven. I didn't really choose it. What can you say.