Monday, December 08, 2008

Life at the Manor

There must be something about moving away from the place a person is born and raised. Something that allows for in-depth introspection.

The children and I are lucky enough to spend a week at my parents while the bedrooms in our house are shuffled. Walls came down and are back up again and the dust is flying while they sand and smooth before the paint goes on.

We moved to an acreage when I was fifteen. I lived in this house until I was about twenty one; back randomly for varying degrees of time as I took my time finishing university. The life of a poverty stricken student was hard on the wallet and it was nice to always have somewhere to go.

I've driven these roads thousands of times. It's nearly rote. An advantage or disadvantage, dependent on the always present Time and Place, is the extra time it takes to get anywhere. There are no two ways about it, factor in a couple of highways and some snow and a person had better leave a nice cushion of time in order to be anywhere not late.

The disadvantages are obvious. I won't list them. The advantages not so. For me, it's a good thing to have that forced break; the lull in busy, as I drive to and from. Prior to an event it allows for a plan, thoughtfulness. Post event is decompression. Finishing.

What really got me thinking on this though is driving those same roads, with the same bumps and same scenery, is that it really walloped me and put me back. Pulled me back to my teenage self with a force I seldom experience, given my focus on the present and worries over the future.
I wonder if people who move away, and by that I mean far away, if they experience that visceral whomp when they come back home. When the familiar is laid out in front of them and it is all so...apparent. When you see the same paint and the same furniture, same roads same trees same skyline, it all blends and you really don't see it at all. But when you come back it's almost like it's all more alive, more poignant.

I wonder if seeing things like this makes a person more cognizant of who they used to be and who they have become. I wonder if people who move far, far away somehow have a leg up. If these things are front and centre come holidays when they traverse the familiar from long ago.

I wonder.


lotusloq said...

I lived in the same house from the time I was 5 until I graduated high school. My parents still live there. After high school though I moved far away for college and other things and since being married we move every few years. Every time I go "home" I get a rush of calm and stability.

Now we only live about 3 hours away and I find that when we are closer the rush is not as strong as when we have been farther away.

Anonymous said...

yeah for sure i feel like i know myself better when i go home. we moved two provinces away and now with kids make it back less and less, i see this feeling surfacing stronger every time we do get back now.