Just Passing Through…

Well, here we are, halfway through the summer.  More than half, actually.  Surprisingly, despite the absence of work, it’s been a busy summer.  I’m not even sure what I’ve been busy doing, really, because aside from the compulsory river rafting day, spending several evenings at pubs catching up with friends, buying a house (another story for another post – I promise), and photo shooting for a few friends, I’ve hardly had the time to do those standard summer things, like lay on a beach or even eat ice cream and poke around downtown, or whatever.  That’s how it feels anyway.

I’ll be honest, I’d much rather write this post as a show & tell “here’s what I’ve done so far on vacation” essay,  – I’m not much a pour my heart out onto a web page type of girl – but today I’m just not feeling it.

Today, I’m kind of tired.

I spend nearly all of July back in Medicine Hat.  I had kind of half expected that an extended period of time back in the brown, cultureless and entertainment-devoid desert would have me scrambling madly back to the Island as fast as I could.  But when it was time to leave, aside from missing my husband rather terribly, I had very little motivation to get in the car.  And not just because we left at the ungodly hour of 5:30 am.  Instead of feeling like I was getting back to my life, it felt like I was leaving it behind again.  Sorry for the melodramatic comparison.

There are things I love about Nanaimo – the ocean, the neat shops and the fact that we’ve lived here a year & still haven’t made it to every cool pub or restaurant, and of course the people we have befriended here.  But it’s just not home.  I still feel like a visitor, a tourist; like every coffee shop I go in, every beach we walk on, or band we listen to – its all under the subtext of “we’ll have to tell the folks at home about this one.” And it’s getting kind of draining being what feels like an observer all of the time.

I largely romanticized, when Nathan & I moved, the idea of picking up, going wherever our feet could take us, and exploring a new place.  Starting fresh, where everything and everyone was a clean slate, with no presuppositions or fore-drawn conclusions about them.  Including us.

But I’m ready for something familiar again.  I’m tired of being a visitor.  It seems paradoxical, because anyone from Medicine Hat will tell you about the “black hole” complex – everyone tries to escape it, but very few manage to actually leave.  And here I am – I did it, I left!, and would like nothing more than to jump back in.

Maybe that’s the way it is though.  Maybe we don’t actually get to choose our homes.  Maybe Medicine Hat has been “home” all along, and I just had to visit somewhere else in order to realize and accept it.


3 thoughts on “Just Passing Through…

  1. Welcome back, Jenae! And thank you for sharing this. I resonate very much with what you say here—in fact, I wrote a very similar post expressing very similar sentiments about a very similar town earlier this year (http://rynomi.wordpress.com/2010/01/30/home/)! For my part, I think there is some truth to the fact that we don’t get to choose our homes. Maybe the most we can hope for is that we will allow all the places we call home at various points in our journey will mold and shape us in positive and creative ways.

    Anyway, I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer!

    • For some reason, the above link doesn’t work properly (at least for me). Sorry! The post I meant to link to was called “Home” but apparently I can’t figure out how to link to it properly :).

  2. i think sometimes to make a new place home, you need to let go of the old place home (trust me, it took about a million moves and few mistakes to get it) I mean you made Winnipeg home, while you still loved the Hat… but, you can’t make a home, if your heart isn’t in it. You never made the choice. You’ve wanted to go home, since you came….

    i’ll miss you when you go.

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