Today I’ve been in my new home for exactly 2 months. It’s a strange thought. It seems both much longer and in no way that long.
Last weekend, I drove back to my old hometown for, among other things, my writers’ group meeting. It was great seeing people face-to-face, as opposed to on the computer screen (we’re working with a Google+ hangout for those of us who go ‘out of town’ during meetings). I also got to see former neighbors, and some of my dog-walking friends (too bad my dog couldn’t come, too!).
And, of course, drive by my old house. It was strange, in a way, not pulling into ‘my’ driveway. But not. Because I now have a new place to park, and I knew this was just a visit.
In my new home, in two short months I’ve managed to find the essentials of living — stores, healthcare providers, banks, library, post offices, etc. — but no new friends to meet for an impromptu bite at a coffee shop, no one to ‘talk shop’ with. I manage to not get lost (at least, not too often) on my side of town. But I feel divided, with my life here and my friends and acquaintances back there. I’m home, but I don’t feel “at home,” yet.
Today it’s very windy and this morning it was more than a bit brisk. Still, the dog needed a walk. I planned on avoiding the beach, since a nor’easter is working itself up, and the lake is in a froth. Having grown up on the lake, I know that strong winds back where I live mean MUCH GREATER winds on the shore. Still, the dog expected the beach, so to the beach we went. As we turned off the road and into the parking lot, the protections of the homes and trees gave way. The wind was breath-taking. Literally. I pulled off my hat (which is normally secure in the wind) and tucked it into my pocket.
The winds slammed at us, slowing me (not the dog, though). Still, we walked on, and down the path to the cut leading to the sand. Windblown spume flung high in the air, carried across the parking lot in a mist. A seagull flapped overhead, holding steady against the wind. The wind was a heavy howl blocking other sounds.
The dog and I ran onto the sand, laughing in the wind. The waves seemed to rise up higher than it should be possible for them to do. The whole of the lake seemed to arc upwards, higher than the beach on which we stood.
We were the only ones there. I flung my arms out, reveling in the ferocity of the wind and waves. And I felt at home.