June 6, 2012

Homes away from home

This is the year of nomadism, the year of trying to feel at home. I've been away from New York the last three weekends -- upstate, then further upstate, then in New Hampshire. When I'm here, in Brooklyn, I've been searching for new office space with the new company I'm part of. And hunting for new apartment space. Yet still unpacking into our temporary home space. And I'll be gone for nearly all of July. 

While I continue my tenuous relationship to space, I always greet travel with the possibility of incredible romance. And so I (almost) always say yes to invitations to be elsewhere. I love road trips and train rides and boat rides and bike rides. Planes, I could do without. I like sleeping in rooms with unlikely paintings and peeling wallpaper and arriving at night anticipating what the morning light will be like in a room. I like seeing how people stack their books and pot their plants and the food that's in their fridges for a midnight snack. I like fires. And I've been privy for 7 nights around campfires in the last 5 weeks. How unlikely, for a Brooklynite. 

I always imagine these places as opportunities to open my brain up to the slight discomforts of non-home, that make you a bit more aware and perceptive of what's around you -- what you have and don't. 

A few weekends ago, I went upstate to my parents' house for Memorial Day weekend. My dad's garden is fruiting with early summer treasures: all kinds of lettuce, mizuna, young garlic, abundant flowers, herbs. There's lots more on the way, including about two dozen types of heirloom tomatoes (i.e. the gold mine of vegetables). We had about 15 people crammed into their very modestly-sized house, gorging on these garden goods, and also preparing for a 50 lb pig roast (photos to come). 

So though I sporadically mourn my lack of what feels like a real "home" right now, I also remember I'm welcome in many other homes to pick lettuces, make bonfires, peruse bookshelves, pet puppies and wake up to the smell of bacon and eggs.