HomeLeave 2010 part 1
It’s a deep breath, an expansion of space, a lifting of weight I’d forgotten was there. It’s taking off a pack and heavy coat, trading hiking boots for thongs. It’s coming home. Not that I don’t love the life I have right now, but coming home shines light on how limited it is. Even if I choose not to participate in much of American culture, everything is available. Really, anything that exists, I could have / do / eat it. And I would know about it. So I’m torn ~ live lightly on the planet, understand needs versus wants versus luscious gizmongery. When the billboards and ads and cool kids on the street aren’t there to show me what I’m missing, I don’t miss it. But what am I missing? As a hermit artist, there is no community, no synergy, no influence, no instruction. Thank all the powers that be for the interwebs. But that is not here, but there. I am here now and it so good.
The friendly face, familiar car, front door which used to be my own where my key still turns, all welcomed me with the comfort of things which feel like my own. This is my city whether I ever live here again or not. I love the mass of humanity; the variety of human expression; the acceptance of the different, the fringe, and the wildly individual. No matter how European I become, there is a young spirit here which still resonates with my own.
So, how do I find and absorb all the good richness here, have my fill, and carry it back in my noggin and soul to live on until I begin to run dry again?
It began with a fish the first night, cooked into crispy bits with ginger, lemongrass, chili, and green mango. Stomach was very happy. Soul took a deep draught of catching up, sharing ideas, and reconnection with my dinner companion. In the morning, just up the street at Dog Park Cafe (that’s not its real name, but it could be), I had a choice of fresh bagels and the recommendation of their cafe Cubano. “We make it with soy,” said the cheerful girl with much ink and steel at the register. Just like that, no special request only to be denied, it’s how they do it. It’s how I do it, but I do it alone. Not here, I’m not alone. Someone does it my way. And that is the most wonderful part of my City; whoever you are, someone does it your way and most everyone else is happy to let you do it.