Monday, February 15, 2016

Heading home



     Travel is a bit like dying, or rehearsal for it anyway. You bid farewell to life as you know it, your comfortable routines and familiar places, and find yourself conveyed to a world where you do not exist, or didn't up to now, a city of strangers, going about their business blithely ignorant of your existence. 
     Though unlike death, you get to come back, to return to your world, waiting for you. Which is the flip side of travel. Yes, you find new places—Edie and I enjoyed exploring Joshua Tree, investigating Los Angeles, dropping in on our son at Pomona College. But then you get your old life back, buffed to a shine by absence, the old routines given a bit more pizzazz, because you've had a little absence, and the heart has indeed grown fonder. That's also part of travel, a benefit that isn't as romantic or exciting as new discovery, but just as important. Maybe even more important. Because while discovering new places is valuable, re-discovering your real place in the world is vital. Because one day you'll leave and never return, and someone else will take your place. But not yet, and it's a blessing to be reminded of just how good it is to be home.  

6 comments:

  1. I'm always astounded when I get back from a trip and find my house still there, not burned to the ground, not ransacked or trashed. Didn't miss me at all. Work, however, is now always there. Checking one's smart phone can be done as easily in L.A., Seattle or any airport as at the office.

    john

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  2. In this week's episode of Downton Abbey, the Dowager Countess, departing suddenly and secretly for the Riviera, proclaims, "My reason for travelling is to make myself eager to come home. A month among the French should manage it."

    Art reflecting life a la Steinberg.

    Tom Evans

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    1. Ironic you mention "Downton Abbey," because I wrote the above sitting in our hotel room at Pomona College, quickly, while PBS was clearing its throat before broadcasting the new episode.

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  3. Ah yes, the very snobbish Violet. Maggie Smith is a piece of work.

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    1. But there really is "no place like home."

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  4. No one will ever take your place. Your chair, perhaps...and yes, Home Mattress is a sweet spot.

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