I have returned to my steamy Southern nest after a 7 week hiatus (actually 51 days, but who’s counting?). I enjoyed my time in Michigan very much, but am so happy to be “home”.
Home, I’ve decided, is a very relative term. I have a home in Florida. It has taken me a long time to consider this domicile my real home. I have a home in Michigan (currently rented to our son, Lefty). It is hard to visit your “home” when you don’t live there anymore, and it really isn’t your home any more, even though you still hold the deed and you decorated every room in it. It is strange to see other people’s belongings in the “home” you lived in for 23 years.
I have a summer “home”, of sorts, a 35 foot travel trailer in a private campground/resort in the woods of northern Michigan. It is like camping, but not. After all, I slept in a real bed every night, had a stove, fridge, microwave, toilet and shower (albeit very tiny). I had hot and cold running water. Hardly camping. We slept 10 people inside one night when record high temps drove us to turn on the AC – like I said, hardly camping. I usually had 2 or more grandchildren with me at any one time, sometimes all 5 of them at once. It was a magical summer, filled with daily swims, long walks, campfires, fishing, pine trees and lots of love.
When I was in Florida, I wanted to be in Michigan. When I was in Michigan, I missed parts of my life in Florida. You know, the parts where I have phone service, internet, more than 2 television stations with really bad reception, my own roomy shower, and access to real stores. I missed my beloved Sweet Cheeks most of all.
In Florida I miss things like seeing my sons, Pancho and Lefty, often and providing them with the best motherly advice (usually unsolicited and -equally – usually ignored). I miss grandkid hugs, seeing them grow overnight, cool summer evenings around a campfire, hearing the loons before falling asleep and upon awakening, and cold, springfed lakes.
I returned to Florida earlier than planned as I accepted a job offer that required me to begin working this week. So, I guess, for me “home” is several places – wherever I am at the moment – places where memories are made, love is shared, and laughter abounds.